And we can't even return it for store credit.

At the end of the Second World War, everyone was fucking in celebration. 76 million babies were spawned in the United States alone. The population increased so dramatically that they had the power to influence and change the world. The 1960s shaped a generation, discarding archaic social-norms such as sexism and racism, and paving the way for tolerance and moral values regarding human life. The baby-boomers had their chance to change the world. They held the all the power, but instead they got jobs, more or less discarded their new value systems for old ones, and doomed the planet further. As their generation ages and increasingly becomes a burden, how responsible should we hold them? Are they at fault for the current awful state of the world, or are they merely a facet of humanity's innate flaws? 

Population increases have slowed down in the west, however in third world countries the population is increasing rapidly. You might not see how this could possibly be the fault of the baby-boomer generation. Though the boomers usually try to worm their way out of culpability, keep in mind their devoted support of rampant consumerism. By keeping these countries in a stranglehold of dept, the baby-boomers ensured great increases in population as a means of the survival for the citizens. Having large families keeps the world on an unsustainable path. Should these nations, against all odds, develop, resulting in a slow of their population increase, they will undoubtedly follow the baby-boomers suicidal archetype of modern society.

If the entire world lived as the baby-boomer generation encourage us too, it would take three whole planet earths to support the current population. It's happening already – as developing countries become stronger, they take on the worst attributes of western society. Corporations started by baby-boomers become multinational at their expense. The corporations have become entrenched in the economies of the developing countries, consuming them from within and dooming the planet to dwindling resources.

I confronted Fernando Ferreira, my father and a member of the baby-boomer generation, with this theory. He was quick to state that “You can't put it all on the baby-boomers.” When I asked him who, or what, was to blame instead he responded that it was the fault of the system, people, and their greed. Certainly in the above argument, a great deal of importance has been placed on the assumption that our system does work. “The system” I presume, encompasses both capitalism and democracy.

The assumption that the baby-boomers had a chance to stop the subjugation and exploitation of third world countries relies on the idea that democracy actually works, and that capitalism is capable of functioning without the exploitation of lower-class people. If one discards this view, the post WWII generation are simply cogs in a system that perpetuates exploitation for its own gain. My father continued to argue: “It's not the baby-boomers' faults, you can't blame the baby-boomers, they're just part of the society.”

Citizens of first-world countries are not without their heavy financial burden as a result of the baby-boomers. Two words: Health Care. As the baby-boomers grow decrepit and weak under the weight of their fat over-fed bodies, we will face an enormous strain on free health care. Certainly, the elderly will no longer be paying taxes as they won't be working or consuming as ferociously as required by their system. As a result, they will be passing the bill on to our generation and we will be paying through the nose. As their generation outnumbers our own, the failed democracy will recognize exclusively the interests of the elderly. Any chance of socialized education will be quashed, pureed and fed to the elderly with golden spoons. The interests of the youth, and young adults, will be ignored further.

My father argued that because we are a rich country, we will be able to afford it. Trying to worm out of culpability again! However, he has a point, and the elderly have always made up the majority of the voting power anyways, so much isn't likely to change. It's not like the arts sector can get any worse anyways, and those are the only jobs anyone should want in the first place. My dad doesn't seem to think the baby-boomers are at fault, but people in general. “All the mistakes will be made again. The mistakes are repeated over and over and over. All through history every mistake is repeated, on and on it goes.”

//Marco Ferreira

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