My daughter-in-law loves to sit around the dinner table or the living room after her young kids are in bed and pull apart questions and issues. And I love that about her. She loves to sort through responses to find truth. She'd make a good journalist.
Through FaceBook, she presented me with a link about a new book A Generation of Sociopaths: How the Baby Boomers Betrayed America by Bruce Cannon Gibney. It takes a look at baby-boomers--I'm a member of the first class--and comes up with some pretty unflattering conclusions. I've been called a few things: obese, narrow-minded, a far right-winger, but never a sociopath. I had to look it up.
The author cites, according to the Huffington Report, mental health data showing boomers have significantly higher levels of antisocial traits and behaviors ― including lack of empathy, disregard for others, egotism and impulsivity ― than other generations.
In an interview with the Huffington Report, Gibney says: "They were the first generation in the U.S. to be raised permissively. And the evidence strongly suggests that highly permissive parenting leads to some problems later on in life. These people have higher self-esteem, but they tend to be more rebellious and messy, both in the literal sense and in their approach to their own affairs."
He points to the effect of television watching by baby-boomers when they were kids. "They were also the first generation to be raised with television, and there really weren’t parental reservations about screen time." He mentions academic studies showing the negative influence of that.
There seems to be the conclusion that my generation with its sociopathic leanings selfishly used up all the resources and leaving the gen-xers and millennials with mold left-overs.
My memory shows a lot of the opposite. Look at the music at the time. The Beatles. Were they all about self-absorption? The Beach Boys through cars into the mix with the major emphasis on girls. There was Timothy O'Leary, who brought LSD to the mainstream.
But what about the Vietnam War and all the demonstrations and riots. Those were baby-boomers. Were they doing that for themselves? They saw politicians wrongfully conducting a war in Southeast Asia and they became a force for change.
The author is in venture capital. Perhaps, he's grieving the downturn in his Apple stock. It could be the obscenely expensive real estate in San Francisco and he's trying to find a scapegoat.
I wonder how many millennials bought his book.