…these quotations also hint at two broader explanations for the millennial reaction: a generational narcissism and a generational need to be part of history, especially when its easy.
Let’s take the last one first. Millennials love to hurl themselves in the path of history. This isn’t exclusive to 9/11 — think of how they voted for Obama by record margins, then disappeared when the real work began — but it’s easiest to spot in examples involving the military.
In another recent survey, conducted by American University, 12% of millennials said 9/11 made them more likely to enlist, but 26% said it made them less likely.
And, without submitting to stereotypes — Keith Urbahn, the guy who broke the news of Bin Laden’s death on Twitter, is both a Yale millennial (class of 2006) and a member of the Navy Reserve — it’s safe to say that the millennials who do enlist don’t typically come from places like Yale.
Of course, there is no comparison between Arab street celebrations and American ones (although the author goes on to make one, later in the op ed.)
This is quite simply because we are the good guys and Arabs are the bad guys.
Pretty simple, but unlike the author, I didn’t go to Yale, where even 90% smart people cling irrationally to their 10% of stupid.