Are Millennials the worst? Maybe not.

David Burstein says that the Millennial generation gets a bad rap, and that their desire to change their world is what will make them successful.
David Burstein says that the Millennial generation gets a bad rap, and that their desire to change their world is what will make them successful.

As a member of a generation maligned as self-centered, lazy, and perpetually adolescent, David Burstein wrote his new book “Fast Future: How the Millennial Generation is Shaping Our World” to try and set the record straight about today’s young adults. Through research and interviews with several of the eighty million American Millennials, Burstein paints a nuanced and optimistic portrait of America’s emerging movers and shakers.

You write with more optimism about Millennials than most other people. What drove you to write this book?

For the 2008 election cycle I helped produce a documentary, and have been traveling all over the country showing it at college campuses and registering new voters. A lot of people talked to me about wanting to start an energy company or a business, about doing something about education, or about other problems around them. This is a story that needs to be told. At the same time I was reading all these stories by people from other generations about how our generation is a generation of narcissists, that we’re disengaged, and that’s just not what I’m seeing. So I set out to try and tell the story of our generation from the perspective of the people framing it.

I’m curious as to how the millennial generation is shaped by the Recession.

While this generation is on track to make less money than our parents, the cost of living actually decreasing. We have the lowest levels of car ownership, home ownership and childbirth. Young people today don’t need as much money as they have needed in the past. I think for the first time, you have a group of people not motivated by money as their #1 goal. There is a sense that happiness, fulfillment and community are more important. That is something that is consistently impossible for people of other generations to understand.

How have Millennials adapted the idea of community?

People today are part of so many communities, and they’re consistently and constantly connected to all of them. They take old communities with them, and join new ones along the way. Because of the internet, people can be part of communities across state or international lines, so the ability of young people to spread the work they’re doing is greater than ever before.

 



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Is #JusticeForAvaLynn a case of bullying?

On Saturday, the hashtag #JusticeForAvaLynn became one of the trending topics on Twitter. Users circulated the above photo of 5-year-old AvaLynn, posted by her mother…

International

Terrorism could spread to US and Europe in…

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah said terrorism would soon spread to Europe and the United States unless it is quickly dealt with in the Middle East,…

National

Ex-Bitcoin official to plead guilty to Silk Road…

Bitcoin entrepreneur Charlie Shrem has reached a plea deal to resolve U.S. charges that he engaged in a scheme to sell over $1 million of…

International

China's army changes tactics to prepare for war…

Chinese President Xi Jinping has said China will spur military innovation and called on the army to create a new strategy for "information warfare" as…

Gossip

Joan Rivers on life support: Report

TMZ reports that comedian Joan Rivers has been placed on life support, "completely reliant on machines to stay alive." Rivers has been hospitalized since she…

Movies

What's new on Netflix in September

September has a supernatural theme for Netflix. UFO "documentaries" and the survivalist reality series "Doomsday Preppers" are among the new series coming to the online…

Going Out

'Friends' coffeehouse Central Perk coming to NYC —…

"Friends" is coming back for a one-off special: "The One with the Free Coffee." Warner Bros. is bringing a pop-up replica of Central Perk, the…

Movies

Interview: 'As Above, So Below' directors: 5 ways…

The fraternal directors of the found footage horror "As Above, So Below" dish on the best ways to frighten the bejesus out of audiences.

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

Wellbeing

VIDEO: Still not wearing sunscreen? You will after…

Sunscreen is possibly the most often repeated - and ignored - piece of skincare advice. But Thomas Leveritt took a different tactic. With a short…

Food

Twitter used to track down sources of food…

When Chicago health officials saw Twitter users complaining about local food poisoning episodes, they reached out on Twitter to those users and often ended up…

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…