Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Gen X Rising


In a post on the Politico it is argued that Barack Obama is the first GenX presidential candidate. Those of us who fit into that generation do not receive the press of our Baby Boomer parents. We have lived of course within the Baby Boomer Psychodrama for our entire lives. It was our role to be the Children who watched the the 1970's from our cribs and playgrounds. It has been our role to dwell with the shadow of 'their' great history and slide along quietly while watching our younger Millennial brothers and sisters take over the world we are the ultimate sandwich generation born during a terrible war and formed during the narcissism of the Baby Boomers perpetual youth.
This is true in Poetry as well as we well know. The fact that we still hark back to debates and arguments between Language poets and the fact that many of the arbiters of poetic taste are boomers lets those of us who are GenX know where we fit into the culture.
Barack Obama embodies our generation. A child of divorce, abandonment and parental narcissism he rose above all that to become confident and to give back in a quiet way. It was in many ways harder to make a difference in the 1970's and 1980's and Barack did that. But in the end those of us born between 1961 and 1980 have a champion and a candidate.
It is fitting that the two baby boomer presidents- Bush and Clinton spent years arguing about their generations' issues. It is now our time- and we have our candidate.



3 comments:

Mark said...

Ray,

It sure is refreshing to have a candidate that's not a Boomer. As I've said before, I'm done with the Boomers. I've had enough: enough of their fear of the Other; their failings; their self-absorption; their arrogance, which prevents them from admitting mistakes.

They wait to talk; they do not listen. Obama listens and synthesizes information -- a real gift in a complex, global world.

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