I think Mike referenced Generation We in a list of greatest hits last month. We’ve all been pretty busy and Gen We is full of some of the most tasty information I’ve seen in quite some time. I’m combing my way through it, but unfortunately, only between other stuff, which means I haven’t gotten as far as I’d like to. I’m also reading it completely out of order.
Writer Eric Greenberg pulled together the results of over eighteen months of research, polls and focus groups to prove one thing: the Millennial Generation is a force to be reckoned with. Through his new book, and a website, Greenberg is harnessing the thoughts and energy of a younger generation.
“They are not a ‘me’ generation; they are the ‘we’ generation,” he says. “They are about the greater good,” he adds, noting that they’re really jazzed up about the environment and the energy crisis. Armed with his huge study, he’s urging both presidential campaigns to focus on one mega-idea the kids endorsed; an Apollo-style approach to the energy crisis.”
According to the extensive data in GenWe there are between 95 and 100 million people born between 1978 and 2000, and now more than ever those over 95 million young people are united around the same political issues and visions.
The book also makes the case that Millennials are:
- Dedicated to improving the common good over individual gain, a sentiment that crosses all racial, ideological and partisan lines.
- Reject fundamental principles of modern conservatism -primary focus on individual rights and trickle down economics.
- Welcome innovation and are eager to establish a new. paradigm
Gen We just released a great video that Eric says is “about American youth reclaiming their birthright, spoken in their voices. And it ends with a great call to action . . . Make sure you watch it to the end!”
Greenberg describes many of the issues our world faces today, such as the climate crisis, are of importance for younger folks. These issues span across parties, races, genders, and location. According to the book, Republicans and democrats agree on these issues 85 percent of the time.
“Youth don’t realize they have more in common with each other than anything else,” Greenberg said in a phone interview. “They have a balance of power in the world more than anyone else, and collectively have a lot of power globally.”
He urges Millennials not to put off these problems until tomorrow.
The presidential election is only the first step. The second step is encapsulated on the website that gives young voters and organizations practical organizing tools, from fifteen minute activism to weekend projects and legislation.
WE also has a new website that they say “is the beginning of a community to enable the Millennial Generation to mobilize and continue their important political engagement: www.gen-we.org.”
Eric says in an email
“(Millennials) have emerged as a powerful political and social force. As the largest generation in history, they are independent – politically, socially, and philosophically – and are spearheading a period of sweeping change in America and around the world. One only has to look as far as the Obama phenomena to understand that. In the latest quarter of fundraising alone, a staggering 128,000 students donated to his campaign.
We are happy to announce that we have released Generation We: How American Youth Are Taking Over America and the World Forever and all of the research that went into it FREE as open source at www.gen-we.com. It’s the open-source publishing model that makes Generation We a landmark for the information industry. Physical copies are available through bookstores and online. It’s a unique approach that sacrifices profit to make the ideas as accessible as quickly and broadly as possible.
When I last spoke with Eric he said he was hoping this site could allow groups who couldn’t afford to buy these tools themselves and utilize them, to come together around a movement. It also allows young organizers bring people together around local issues or community issues that mega orgs don’t talk about.
Its a great book, good site, and I’m grateful we have this available to us now.