the F.A.I.T.H. series: “the kids are alright”
the first time i came across Chloe x Halle was on Facebook a few years ago. as i listened to the two girls sing a gorgeous cover of “Pretty Hurts” by Queen Bey, i thought dang! those girls are incredibly talented. and they are. but little did i know that those girls would later grow and create music that truly spoke to me as a mother and teacher of the “post-millennial” generation. when i heard the song “The Kids Are Alright,” i had to shout. why? because the kids ARE alright.
the current generation - today’s kids and teenagers - are not the worst. in fact, i distinctly remember growing up hearing that my generation - those notorious millennials - was the worst.
in fact, i still hear it. “Millennials are lazy, impatient, like tattoos, job hoppers, too focused on self-expression, outspoken” (Jones, 2015). H O W E V E R, we also get props where props are due. we are “confident, self-expressive, liberal, upbeat and open to change….[we] embrace multiple modes of self-expression” (Jones, 2015). yeah, millennials are pretty lit.
you know who else is pretty lit? post-millennials. generation Z. digital natives. whatever you want to call them, kids these days are incredible. sure, some of them eat tide pods and are literally addicted to their phones. *face-palm-emoji* H O W E V E R, they are also civic-minded, politically engaged, technologically advanced, and surprisingly self-aware (in my opinion).
the thing i love most about the current generation, though, is how they hold (us) adults accountable. call me crazy, but as a high school teacher, i love it when one of my students thoughtfully and intelligently points out the inconsistencies that they observe about the world, especially as it applies to the adults in their lives. even if the adult is me. my kids have no problems telling me when i am wrong, or asking me clarifying questions, or giving suggestions and feedback as to how things could be better. on the one hand, this is often seen as disrespect of their elders and authorities. on the other hand, i see this as my students having confidence in the validity of their opinions. too many times, we try to silence youth because we have the wisdom of age and what do they know anyway? they’re just kids, right?
think that if you want. then listen to this 11-year-old spit straight facts.
eleven. years. old. so what y’all will not do is sit here and tell me that this generation is the worst. they have been born into “a time of hardship, global conflict and economic troubles” (Williams, 2015), but time and time again, i see them stepping up to the challenge of making this crazy world better. and i am loving it. as Chloe said when asked what “The Kids Are Alright” means to her: “[W]ith this generation and how the world has gone mad and all these crazy things that are left for this generation to handle, it’s just proclaiming that we will be alright no matter what, and they shouldn’t worry about us. I love being part of this generation because we’re not afraid to let our voices be heard, and we’re not afraid to speak our mind.” Her sister, Halle, added that they “feel like the youth are definitely going to make a change in everything that we’re doing” (Bruner, 2018). and i agree. the children are the future, but they are also the present. the adults of the world better start listening up, because generation z definitely has something to tell us.
gen Z epitomizes this concept. they know the storms that they are up against, but they also know that they are learning and growing into teens and young adults with the capabilities to sail their ships through those storms. yeah, they are flawed (just like every generation before them), but i wouldn’t worry about them too much. the kids ARE alright.
❤️ lauren dee.
Bailey, C., Bailey, H., Gordon, D., & Parks, T. (2018). The kids are alright [Recorded by Chloe x Halle]. On The kids are alright [Digital recording]. Parkwood Entertainment.
Bruner, R. (2018). Beyoncé protégés Chloe x Halle are here to prove that the kids are alright. Time. Retrieved from http://time.com/5206363/chloe-x-halle-kids-are-alright/
Jones, H. (2015, May 12). Why should the millennial mindset matter? Retrieved from http://www.socialfish.org/2015/05/why-should-the-millennial-mindset-matter/
Williams, A. (2015, September 18). Move over, millennials, here comes generation z. The New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/20/fashion/move-over-millennials-here-comes-generation-z.html