There’s no way anyone can ignore the terrible things currently happening with youth culture today. Well, okay, maybe if you’re rich and don’t have to live around such people. I am 21 myself so I hate to use phrases such as “the youth of today”, it just makes you sound old and ignorant so I will try not to use such terms.
My home town is Portsmouth, although I live in a nice area of it, Portsmouth is known for its chav population and horrible council estates. It’s a poor city and over-crowded so it’s to be expected. When I was younger I didn’t want to walk through a park if there was a group of suspect looking teenagers in there, even if I was older than them. How did such young children get so scary? Even middle aged men wouldn’t attack a group of kids hitting another kid if they were wary about their own life. Kids carry knives now, sometimes guns. Their either drunk or drugged up. Many say “it didn’t use to be this way” so what’s changed?
Young people have always been violent. Unfortunately it’s part of growing up, puberty. When we get out of our teenage years we forget what it was like, what we were like but at some point in time we’re explosive. We swear at our parents, slam the door and go get drunk with our mates. It’s almost always been that way because it’s natural to want to rebel, if only just a little bit. Smart parents will give their children controlled freedom so that their kids don’t want to go overboard with the rebelling. Alas, this is not true of every child. Some are more angry than others, more violent and there’s a good reason for it.
Well, there are many reasons. The obvious ones are: abuse, they’re being bullied themselves, they’re brought up in an aggressive environment, they’re copying their parents. We all know these things can cause someone to go off the rails. However, I think there’s a bigger problem afoot. The media.
Remember when the media created these people called “hoodies”? Yeah, me too. Hoodies are an item of clothing that people of all ages wear but to the media, they’re violent young people who like to do nothing more than rob the local shop or set a flat on fire. The media started to segregate young people from the rest of society. I was a teenager at the time and I felt angry. Not all of us are bad, I thought. They were pushing us all into one group because they’re too old to remember what being a teenager is like. Young people aren’t a separate species. You were a bastard once too. This was the start of the fire. Now all we ever hear in the media is there’s no jobs, other people are taking our jobs and there’s no point in going to university any more. Young people are being taught to give up before their lives have begun. I attend university and even THERE it’s drummed into you how the job market is hard, it will take a long time to find a job, your degree isn’t going to get you a job any more. It may be realistic but it’s depressing. It makes me angry because I think, am I wasting my time and getting myself into debt for nothing? And I am a rational-thinking person who comes from a good background. I have it pretty damn good. Think about how those young people living on council estates with little opportunities feel. They are SO angry.
Now I’m not saying it’s an excuse, it’s not. It doesn’t mean your life should turn to crime or stabbing people for the fun of it. But I believe the media is not helping. They may not have caused the problem but they’re not helping. All we hear is negative news day in day out. Do you want your children to grow up thinking “what’s the point?” Sadly the media will always report bad news and I don’t see things changing but my theory could help people understand what’s it’s like to be young again. When I was going through tough times my dad just said “what do YOU have to be stressed about?” He too has forgotten how hard life can be, even if you don’t have a job, kids and a house yet. Times can be just as tough emotionally and we must never, ever undermine how someone feels emotionally. It’s the most powerful thing we have and it’s why we are the way we are.