The Youth of Today

October 24, 2005  |  Culture, Quotes

ChangeThis recently posted a manifesto entitled “The Youth of Today” which is a must-read for those interested in or involved with young people and youth culture. It was written by “DK”, the founder of PhatGnat, an organisation which “creates opportunities for brands and companies to engage and communicate with young people whilst supporting community and youth-orientated initiatives through specific and high-profile partnerships“.

It covers a broad range of topics including Identity, Politics/Government, Brands/Labels, School, Responsibility, Parents, Idols, Being Young, Dreams/Hopes, Crime, Friends, Technology, Religion (almost), Old People and Sex (two distinct subjects – not “Old People and Sex” – eeeuuughhh!).

Here are a few snippets I found particularly interesting:

On Education:

“An associate of mine teaches a particularly tough group of young people and says lots of her colleagues spend half the lesson enforcing the rules of the school rather than teaching — enforcement, she says, is not engaging or teaching that young person anything. Having to deal with students who are still wearing their coats, chewing gum, have more than one earring in, are wearing trainers instead of shoes, skirts are too short etc. is much more important than involving them in a lesson or educating them apparently…” – DK

On Responsibility:

“Look at the government, adults are the LAST people to take responsibility for anything.” – Jess, 19

On Sex:

“Young people undress to impress nowadays. They are grasping sexuality and its power at a much younger age even though they do not have the life-tools and experience to face the negative issues and consequences of such actions.” – DK

“Professionals know that there is no way to stop young people being exposed to sexual imagery or subjects in magazines, films, TV, Internet, but what we can strive to do is educate and hope they can make informed choices.” – DK

I particularly loved this definition of friendship from Hannah, aged 17:

“Friends are cups of tea, getting tipsy, linking arms, sharing popcorn, stupid photographs, in-jokes, and big hugs.” – Hannah, 17