For several years now, Gen Z has been subject to stereotypes, especially pertaining to our relationship with electronics and technology. And like most other members of Gen Z, it can get tiring hearing the same things over and over. Honestly, we are a generation that is pushing the boundaries and stereotypes that have been placed on us. Here are two of the most common stereotypes we hear and my opinion on them.
“We are lazy.”
This stereotype was built purely on the idea that since we are “always on our phone,” “always playing video games,” or “always on the internet,” we have compromised our independent thought and reasoning skills. While there might be some truth to these sentences, they are not an indicator of our work ethic or lack thereof. While we did grow up with the advantage of technology, we also grew up in times of economic adversity, major changes in the environment, and have witnessed a lot of social injustices due to the accessibility of the internet. It is our generation who organized social movements like Black Lives Matter and March for our Lives. Gen Z consists of people like Malala Yousafzai, Greta Thurnberg, and Marley Diaz wanting to fight for real change within their communities and on a global scale. While Gen Z is always being criticized for our “excessive” use of technology, it is also the tool that our generation is using to bring to light to the social injustices and inequalities taking place all over the world. I can go on with the list of things we have managed to do, but to keep it short — we are anything but lazy.
“We don’t know what we are talking about.”
Usually when someone older is saying this to us, it is because they think that their extra life experience means that we don’t know what we are talking about. Sometimes it is also said from a place of thinking that because we are glued to our phones and social media “all the time,” we are detached from the real world and its problems. This couldn’t be farther from the truth in my opinion because I feel like the internet has educated and exposed many of us in this generation to social issues since information is so readily available to us. Even if certain things aren’t taught to us in schools, we still have the ability to go out and learn about them on the internet which wasn’t possible before. The argument is usually made when adults are trying to invalidate our opinions when they disagree with our opinions, which can be really frustrating. Yes, we may not have seen or experienced a lot of life, but usually when we are super passionate about something, we might know what we are talking about. Maybe just hear us out before neglecting what we say.
I am sure there are more negative stereotypes about our generation that are not remotely true, but these were the ones that have always bothered me. I don’t think these stereotypes are going to go away anytime soon, so just keep on doing what you want to. Gen Z is already making its mark on this world and most of us have just barely started our adult lives, so I’m excited to see what we get up to!