Google+

Generational Influences in 2012 American Presidential Election: A New Role for Millennials?

Generational influences will significantly impact our social interactions, labor force, politics, and practically every other aspect of American life over the near term.  This is primarily due to the increasing influence of generation Y, a group more widely known as the Millennials.

The following table is instructive:

Birth range             Generational Identifier        Age in 2012      Age in 2021

1922-1945                      Veterans-Silent                       67-90               76-99

1946-1964                       Baby Boomer                         48-66                57-75

1965-1980                       Generation X                          32-47                41-56

1981-1999               Generation Y, Millennial            13-31                 22-40

The political influence of the Millennials takes on increasing importance over time as they become an increasing percentage of under 65 workers and voters. In 2008, slightly more than half had not yet achieved voting age. That is not to suggest younger members of the group were politically inactive—many may have helped their older brothers and sisters in active political efforts in 2008.  But in 2012, about 75% will have reached voting age and by 2016 most Millennials will be eligible to vote. If we translate these percentages into numbers of eligible voters, that’s about 40 million voters in 2008, 55 million in 2012 and 70 million in 2016. In addition to their sheer numbers, Millennials should become increasingly influential as their older members begin to exercise their leadership potential and enter the political process as candidates.

Millennials, we should recall, are very computer savvy, entrepreneurial, tolerant and goal-oriented. They are passionate about environmental and social issues. They are not afraid of hard work and long hours. They like social interactions. In general, they are (or will be) much more sensible than their Baby Boomer parents were in the late 1960s.

Millennials want leadership and structure.  If they get it, they are going to follow with fervor—just as they did in 2008 with then Senator Obama.  If they get neither, they will either work hard for reforms or potentially foment revolutions as their counterparts have done already on the international stage in Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen and Libya. This was especially clear in Egypt, where the revolution seems to have been led by those under 30. Advancement of social media worldwide works especially to the advantage of the Millennials.

Many regard Millennials as widely disengaged or disenchanted. They talk to each other, get much of their news from each other on Facebook or other social media, from reports that can be accessed immediately from iPads, iPhones or computers and occasionally from political satirists/comedians such as Stephen Colbert and John Stewart. They seem to believe almost nothing of what they hear from the mainstream media or from current GOP presidential candidates, with the possible exception of Ron Paul. The GOP debates were largely regarded as a reality show not particularly aimed at Millennials. After the GOP convention, as the nominee tries to recruit “youth,” a new comedy may begin.

Some believe Millennials will return to President Obama in even larger numbers in 2012 and 2016 than in 2008, but that is by no means certain.  While they can be engaged, passionate, ideological, and highly motivated, they may also feel that they have been effectively locked out of the political system by age and by the influence of multimillion dollar donors.  If they decide to use their political capital, their influence should grow because their numbers are larger.

Interestingly, their parents, the Baby Boomers, may be influential in bringing the Millennials out. The Boomers dropped out when they were under 30 in the mid to late 1960s but rejoined the establishment in large numbers in the 1970s.  Some Boomers could regard what’s going on now as unfinished business and encourage their offspring Millennials to finish the job. Boomers certainly know how to push the Millennials’ buttons.  It will be interesting to see how these generational influences play out.

 

 

Please Follow Richard on Twitter: https://twitter.com/pebblerick

 

Richard A. Hudson is a writer, reader and blogger committed to exercise, proper nutrition and health.  He’s interested in politics, economics, alternative energy, gardening and sustainability and has written brief essays on many of these topics on his bloghttp://richlynne.wordpress.com.  Despite his generally positive and optimistic views about globalization, he wonders whether we will survive current destructive forces that increasingly promote warfare among political and social classes. He is also beginning to think about the declining influence of the know-it-all baby boomer generation just as the next generation born in the 60s begins to slowly stumble into a dominant position in the U.S.

 He received a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Chicago (1966) and subsequently spent 42 years in academics, gradually developing all sorts of interests well beyond his basic training.  He ended his academic career in 2008, having published about 100 scientific papers, reviews and commentaries.  In his last several years in the academy, his role as Dean of the Graduate School afforded him many opportunities to interact with students from all over the world seeking graduate degrees.

Entertainment

Top Ten DVD List for June 27, 2017

  This Week’s DVD Releases by Kam Williams Top Ten DVD List for June 27, 2017               The Lodger [Alfred Hitchcock Silent Film] https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B06XP1WFQF/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20 Trespass [25th Anniversary Collector's Edition] https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B06XHR8T93//ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20 Money [Heist Gone Bad Crime … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Books

Gil’s Goodwill!

  Gil Robertson The “Book of Black Heroes” Interview with Kam Williams Gil's Goodwill! For nearly three decades, writer/author Gil L. Robertson, IV has used the written word to enlighten, empower and uplift. The one-time political organizer initially made his mark in entertainment journalism, penning over 50 national magazine covers and contributing bylines to a wide range of publications that include the Los Angeles Times, the Atlanta … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the days of pain, the days of sorrow. We are in mourning. The sky looks down and sheds its tears for … [Read More its Good For You...]

Real Estate

How to Hire a Winner in Real Estate

  How to Hire a Winner in Real Estate by Amy Lignor   You want to buy that new house because the twins are on their way. Little Betty and Little John are already there, but who knew you would have even more so soon? What’s that? Oh…well, of course, in order to buy that new home with four bedrooms instead of two, you will also need to sell your present homestead in order to get the money needed to start paying on a new one. And, of … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Lifestyle

Ejogo’s Largo!

    Carmen Ejogo The “It Comes at Night” Interview with Kam Williams Ejogo's Largo! Carmen Ejogo has established a distinguished career in both feature films and television. She is best known thus far for her leading role of civil rights activist ‘Coretta Scott King’ opposite David Oyelowo in Ava DuVernay's universally acclaimed SELMA as well as being singled out for her ‘mind-blowing’ lead role as Sister in SPARKLE alongside … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

Fishing for swordfish in Louisiana? You bet

  Fishing for swordfish in Louisiana? You bet by Craig Lamb The Mississippi River delta and surrounding offshore waters are without a doubt some of the richest fishing waters in the world. Venice, Louisiana, is the hub for reaching the richest saltwater game fish waters in the U.S. Yellowfin tuna. Snapper. Grouper. Wahoo. Dolphin. Marlin. And lately, there are swordfish. If you want to experience the latest hot trend in Louisiana … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

You Don’t Have to be Greek to be a “Zorba” Fanatic

  You Don’t Have to be Greek to be a “Zorba” Fanatic by Amy Lignor   No, the sport is not called ‘Zorba’, but it most definitely fits for this article’s title. This most unusual sport is actually called ‘Zorbing’, and has caught on like wildfire across the globe. And now, seeing as that the NBA has wrapped, with Golden State proving that they were determined to make amends for last season; and with the NHL closing up shop for the season … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Add Value with Summer Home Renovation Projects

  Add Value with Summer Home Renovation Projects by Amy Lignor   There are a whole list of summer activities for you and the kids planned. Most of them, of course, you want to be nothing but fun, such as grilling outside on the patio or swimming in the pool. However, having the backyard pool and patio are two things you really need in place before either of those activities could be enjoyed. And building this area could be a great … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Finding Relaxation in the Most Remote Locations of All

    Finding Relaxation in the Most Remote Locations of All by Amy Lignor   It is a fact that the largest travel locations are also beyond popular. Among the downsides of this fact is that when you’re looking for peace, quiet, and basically a chance to do nothing more than spend time with yourself and, perhaps, one other best friend, the most popular places don’t offer that. In other words, it is the most remote (sometimes most … [Read More its Good for You...]

Green Living

Creating the Perfect Vegetable Garden

  Creating the Perfect Vegetable Garden by Amy Lignor   Many are still dealing with that wintery mix Mother Nature just loves to toss down from the sky this time of year. Yet, that gardener living inside the soul – the one just dreaming of the sunny skies and lazy rainy days that are must-haves in order to grow the best vegetables possible – is already jotting down the facts, tricks and tips they need to know in order to make that … [Read More its Good for You...]