Thursday, October 23, 2008

Boomers not hippies, more like hippie haters

Minnesota columnist Tim Engstrom has an interesting perspective on the Gen X/Boomer conflict.

Like many Xers, he's tired of the Boomer folklore that paints all Boomers as pot-smoking hippies in the 1960s. In fact, he argures that most Boomers were more likely to be anti-hippie, than actual hippies.

I'm curious what you-all think on the topic. When I'm with Boomer colleagues, I'd say Tim was wrong. Although not potheads, I could definitely see a lot of the Boomers I've worked with over the years wearing some serious tie-dye back in the day. Yet, my mom and her buddies - also Boomers - were definitely more Doris Day than Grace Slick.

Any thoughts?


Le said...

Hello there Suzanne - I'm with Tim on this one. In general terms I feel there is only a really small sliver of boomers that fit the hippie mould (nearly made that mold ...)

My indepth experience of one Boomer in particular - the one I am married to - a 1956 model - (me 1967) - gives me reason to think they are conservative - not always in morals / values but certainly with $ / investments etc.

Noticing differences in the way we viewed risk prompted me to llok into the whole generational thing - boy oh boy do I NOT recommend inter-generational marriges .. beware the pitfalls - add the male female differences and phew eh there are some 'issues'. Then make me the income earner and him the stay at home dad and see what happens - I think I am a case study ...

My mum is a boomer I think (she is 65) and she is for sure more Doris Day than than hippie chick - she married a vetran - I see a pattern here ...

Sorry to rave on - cheers le

Anonymous said...

I was nodding my head along with Tim's points. Right until he agreed with a commenter that in general Gen Xers are the children of Boomers. When I look around this just isn't what I see. Perhaps there are some of the oldest Boomers who are parents to the younger Gen Xers. But in many more cases it's the Silent Generation who are parents of Xers. And setting aside reproductive stats, all I can see is that culturally the Boomers are the parents of Gen Y. Those parents who are currently super-involved in their kids' college experiences and calling up their recent grads' new employers to complain that their kid isn't being treated right? Not Xers. Boomers.

SAM said...

In order to set the stage for the following paragraph, I will allow that I am supposedly an "X'r" (69) married to a assumed "Boomer" (55) and I disagree with the warning about inter-generational marriage. My experience has been loving and supportive - both ways. My husband graduated high school the year I started kindergarden and though he was raised in an untra-conservative family, he experienced the hippie life, also. This made him aware and rounded in a way I don't quite comprehend since I missed the 60's and am too young to remember a lot of the 70's. He has been open minded and open to teach me what he has learned. In turn, he has learned, listened and been open to the experiences unique to me and my generation.

All in all, it depends on the people, and the marriage. My husband and I are both ordained ministers and have offered marriage counseling for years and have discovered that labels and stereotypes are shallow and often incorrect. We are unique individuals on our own paths and though we may fall into certain categories due to our nurture and nature, we offer value and substance to this Earth. The key is to recogize it for what it is and not generalize what it is supposed to be.

Unknown said...

unless you where on drugs and had sex..(free love)you weren't a full blown hippie..