Generation X-The Weakest Generation Analysis

810 Words4 Pages
With his op-ed piece “Generation X-the weakest generation?” published in the Washington Post, the political opinion writer Dana Milbank asks a question: is the generation he hails from the weakest in terms of accomplishments? As Milbank states in his piece, “We grew up soft: unthreatened, unchallenged and uninspired. We lacked a cause greater than self,”. Milbank, having written about politics in society for many years, is known for giving readers his own views on the political atmosphere through “characterizing political debate as consisting of two unreasonable poles” his “habitual and inflexible” posture on certain issues and by viewing himself “as a truth-teller caught in the middle” (“Greg Marx”). This op-ed piece continues his tradition…show more content…
He goes on to explain that previous generations hold “connections” to certain major historical events such as The March on Washington to which he envies as evidenced by, “My generation, Generation X, has no equivalent,”. Later on in the piece, Milbank attempts to validate the argument by adding that, although noble, things like “the fight against apartheid; for gay rights and for environmentalism” simply did not capture the “sacrifice” made by causes such as the civil rights movement. Furthermore, he adds that those drafted during the time of the Vietnam War faced real terror and hardship, as compared to the “theoretical threat” such as the Cold War. As a result, Milbank concludes the argument by stating that the previously mentioned theoretical threats have made the new generation of Americans “unthreatened, unchallenged, and…show more content…
He then wastes no time in finding personal ties to this event through his family, which shortly thereafter, he states his main argument. Although this use of pathos in the opening is quite enticing, Milbank does not support it properly throughout the piece. As mentioned earlier, he states that the fight for apartheid to end, gay to have protected rights, and environmentalism to be more care for are not really powerful movements in society, though as seen in recent years, many people can beg to differ. Of course, if Milbank had made such a statement with sufficient evidence, it might have had a chance to win the reader over; however, he hardly scratches the surface of any possible evidence that could have been used, which makes this statement seem more like a shallow insult than just a simple criticism. Also, this lack of evidence makes the reader question Milbank’s legitimacy pertaining to this issue, as it begs the question: Does Milbank really know how much sacrifice went into these merely “noble” movements? Does he know how much suffering took place in order for people to fight alongside these movements? From what he presents in the piece, the answer is likely no. Although Milbank’s point might seem agreeable at first glance, the lack of evidence leaves the piece feeling as if it is
Open Document