We millennials have been called just about every bad name under the sun and have had just about every negative adjective you can give a person attributed to our generation. Lazy. Spoiled. Entitled. Bratty. Whiny. We don’t work hard, nor do we want to work hard. We’re drains on the economy. Basically, we’re ungrateful pricks. Of course, most of the people calling us these bad things are Baby Boomers who caused most of the world’s problems in the first place, but that’s not the point.
Now you can throw another log on the fire: We hate volunteering and helping people.
According to figures released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, millennials have the lowest volunteer rate of any age group. People ages 20-24 came in at the lowest with just 18.7 percent of all people surveyed who volunteered between September 2013-2014, and the next lowest group, ages 25-34, clocked in at 22 percent. The next lowest group were adults 65 and older, with about 24 percent, and kids ages 16-19, with 26.1 percent. You hear that, millennials? We’re getting our asses kicked by teenagers and the elderly!
The article, from Bloomberg, is very quick to point out that “81.3 percent of Americans in their early 20s hadn’t done a single thing to help someone out, any time recently.”
What the article doesn’t factor in is the fact that for most of us in this age range, we’re in the midst of entry-level, hellish jobs. We work incredibly long hours, often paired with a decently long commute because we can’t afford to live anywhere near the places we work, and we make absolutely shit money. Some of us work 12 hour days, five days a week. Some work six or seven. Tack on 30 minutes to an hour of commuting on each end, just so we can go back to our apartments and maybe sleep just under what we need to actually function the next day, to do it all over again. And our weekends are either spent working, catching up on work, or actually attempting to have a social life in the tiny period we have between soul-crushing labor.
So tell me: Where in that do you possibly see fitting in volunteering?
Don’t get me wrong. Volunteering is great. I wish I could do it more. I think I will. Call it a New Year’s resolution. In March. Helping others is awesome and it’s definitely something I want to do more of. But let’s be honest here — we have so little time to ourselves when we’re first starting out working, and we’re trying to have fun and figure out our lives before shit gets serious. Our free time is precious and we kinda need it to, you know, do us, whether that’s unwinding with a little Netflix or cable after work, getting stone drunk, Tindering ’til our genitals fall off, or some combination of the above.
Basically, what I’m trying to say is that yeah, we’re selfish, terrible people. But, on the other hand, fuck off, we’re doing the best we can. Cut us some slack, huh? We’d give you money to leave us alone but, frankly, none of us have any..
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