An excerpt from the book "How Not to Become a Millennial." Would make for some great quarantine reading while you're all cooped up over the weekend.
"Whether you realize it or not, we are all witness to the final and concluding days of the largest social experiment in the history of America. Not only in terms of the number of test subjects involved, nor the decades of time it took to conduct, nor the complete scope of the experiment, but in terms of what this experiment boldly set out to do – prove that humans knew better than nature.
On one side of this experimental debate is 2 million years of human existence, honed by trial and error, wars fought, mistakes made, and untold amounts of pain, suffering, toil, and strife. But after 2 million years and 100 billion human lives we derived the cultural norms, golden rules, and codified laws that culminated into the “conventional wisdom” that governs humanity today.
On the other side we have 50 years of the “social sciences” and the still-living “social scientists” who work within them. In a mere half a century, .0025% of the time humans have existed on the planet, these
“grad students,” and
“theories and hypotheses”
“studies and research papers”
“experiments and tests”
thought they knew better than human nature. That humans had the cognitive ability to not only master the physical sciences such as physics, medicine, biology and chemistry, but master and understand the infinite and unquantifiable social inter-workings between human beings themselves. That, yes, you could study physics and inevitably land a man on the moon, or virology and inevitably cure a disease, but we can also study the human mind and humanity itself, solving all social ills such as politics, war, crime, discrimination, oppression, tyranny, poverty, even bullying. And if we can just unlock these hidden secrets from the social “sciences,” these social “scientists” can usher in what nobody else in history could.
And so these social scientists set out about 50 years ago to unlock the secrets and algorithms of humanity. They’d study politics, economics, sociology, religion, history, government, linguistics, communications, and sexuality. They’d study psychology, psychiatry, philosophy, women’s studies, the human mind, and people’s genders. They’d study Latino-cultures, Afro-cultures, Anglo-cultures, Asian-cultures, Aboriginal-cultures, and “international relations.” And they’d study zoology, anthropology, marriage studies, familial studies, early childhood development, education, and special education. Every possible angle, aspect, inch, and trait of humanity they would study. And soon, after decades of time and billions of hours of research, an impressive body of work started to form. Hypotheses were tested, theories established, and ultimately these social studies codified into official disciplines of academic research. The social scientists were so close to unlocking the secret to utopia they could taste it. They just needed a test subject to prove they were right. A human guinea pig to turn into an ubermensch. Preferably, an entire generation to truly usher in utopia on a nationwide scale, ultimately validating the social sciences, as well as themselves.
Thankfully, this ideal test subject was already in the making and at the ideal time too. By the 1980’s the social sciences had evolved into a formalized study just itching for its first legitimate test subject. Also, it really wasn’t until the 1980’s that significant government money would flood into academia, making these experiments financially possible anyway. But most importantly, by the 1980’s the perfect test subject was already being born – the echo boom. They were called the “echo boom” because they were “echo babies” of their parents – the Baby Boomers. Consequently, like the Boomers, they too would become a large, pronounced, and distinguishably different generation from others. But they would also become a social scientist’s dream-come-true as they would all be born into the same economic, political, and sociological environment.
You combine these four traits:
- a codified, maturing academic study whose theories needed to be tested
- adequate funding
- an entirely distinguishable test-subject generation being born
- all happening at that same time
and you had the perfect storm to finally and conclusively test all of the social sciences. You had the ability to see if the billions of human hours and trillions of government dollars were wasted or invested. You even had the chance to witness the utopia we were promised being born. And the generation that was going to make this all possible, the generation of human test subjects who would usher us into this utopian world would be the echo-boomers.