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Embracing The Label Of A Baby Boomer

Embracing The Label Of A Baby Boomer

By Susan Williams

I read a very interesting article entitled The Great Gen X vs. Boomer Debate Comes for Kamala. In the post, the author points out that the recently appointed vice president running mate for Joe Biden, Kamala Harris is actually – wait for it – a baby boomer.

The author further describes how “…Harris (55 herself) is practically aglow with youthful vitality. You’d barely know that Harris is a boomer. And don’t expect her to own it.” . She further adds, “No one wants to be a boomer any more, and it’s easy to see why.” and cites a number of different negative examples of what baby boomers have done or contributed over the years.

In the US, people are classified as being a baby boomer if they were born between 1946 to 1964 (in Canada it’s 1946 to 1965) and since Kamala was born in 1964, it’s true. She is a baby boomer.

I hate to admit it, but before I launched Booming Encore I was surprised to find out that I was actually a baby boomer myself. In my mind, I had stereotyped a baby boomer as some old person shaking their fist in the air yelling at kids to get off their lawn. But given I was born in 1963, you can imagine my surprise when I discovered that I was a member of the baby boomer generation.

As I began to accept my new found generational identity, I discovered there are many positive things that are attributed to baby boomers. Protesting to end the Vietnam War, fighting for civil rights and the women’s liberation movement are only just a few. Plus don’t forget that we are also the generation that heralded in the internet back in 1991. And to top it all off – many of us are the parents of the generations that are now further advancing some of the ideas and thinking that our generation originally started.

Now I am not for one minute saying that baby boomers are without fault.

We have also brought many things into this world that we now collectively have to deal with. Our high levels of consumerism and poor environmental policies introduced significant pollution and global warming. The further division and divide of the middle class and races along with the inequality of sharing wealth has created an unbalanced society. Plus a number of other things that could be pointed in our generational direction.

But here is where the opportunity lies.

I think as baby boomers we have a great opportunity to return to some of the good work we started as well as help set right some of the wrongs we possibly set in motion. We have the chance to collaborate with all generations and provide our valuable time, skills, resources and experience to tackle some of these issues together.

Rather then shrinking from being called a boomer – and accepting the associated “OK Boomer” or “Karen” name calling, I push back and challenge this.

I think that within any generation, there are some great and amazing people along with there being some idiots. I believe it is up to each of us, no matter what generation we are in, to drop the generational divisions and name calling and work together to make this world a better place for everyone.

This way any generation that follows will be able to thank all the generations before them for what they have done.

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Susan Williams is the Founder of Booming Encore. Being a Boomer herself, Susan loves to discover and share ways to live life to the fullest. She shares her experiences, observations and opinions on living life after 50 and tries to embrace Booming Encore's philosophy of making sure every day matters.