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Monday, March 30, 2009

Pinoy Youth: Still Clueless?

Global Crisis.
Failing Economies.
Job Shortage.

We have been hearing much of these words lately. The problems of the world’s economies are all over the news; they are the topic of almost everyone’s conversations and they have now been accepted as a fact.

But the younger generation, my generation, doesn’t know much about these words. Basically, we know that the economies of the world are not doing great; even the highly industrialized countries are now feeling the crunch.

I do not know if there really is a global crisis, or if we should accept this as a fact. And even though it has been scattered in every news channel, in every newspaper, and in every important website, we still don’t understand it. Honestly, we kids haven’t felt the crunch yet. We have yet to feel the effects of the so-called global crisis first-hand.

The people we associate with the global crisis are the Americans we see crying on TV for not being able to pay rent; for being laid off of their jobs; for not having enough to eat; for not having enough money to put their kids through college; or for not being able to pay for a decent home.

And although these scenes are heart-breaking, they are as common as Buko Pie in the Philippines. I mean, this isn’t something new. Long before I was born, this has been the plight of, my fellow Filipinos. And just because Americans are now going through these problems as well, they are suddenly worthy causes to panic and be alarmed?

More importantly, these scenes pale in comparison with the latest episodes of the even more dramatic American Idol, or Gossip Girl. Adults always blame us kids for not caring too much, but can you really expect us to care about something we can’t relate with?

While Americans on the opposite side of the world complain about these problems that we Filipinos now consider part of our culture, here we are trying to convince ourselves that there is a crisis for the sole reason of pretending to be informed and in tune with current events. Which leads us to question: have we always been living in crisis, and not know it?

Because the cries of these Americans we see on TV are familiar. Too familiar in fact, we kids don’t even find it reason enough to care. What we want is plain and simple: basically, we just want to when we are going to feel the crunch and how we are going to feel the effects of this crisis, because last time we checked, we still had money to go out partying, we still had money to buy the latest “it” gadget, we still had money to spend on gourmet coffee; and we still had the money to stay beautiful (gosh, even my labandera sports manicured and polished nails).

What I want to say is: we are not an informed lot. And this is a very sad fact, considering that we have become global as a generation. Our generation has become more in-tune with the rest of the world, we have succumbed to globalization in media, entertainment, technology and in other facets of life.We know more about the latest fashions and the latest widgets on Facebook than we do about this crisis. And you can’t really blame us kids. Nobody has tried reaching out to us to explain what is happening around the world, nobody has tried to break these terms down to help us understand what is happening around the world and if there is even reason to be alarmed. There is nothing to help us understand these ideas in terms we could actually understand and relate with. Right now, all we want is information; digestible, understandable, practical information to help us understand what is actually going on. Sadly, we have nothing of the sort, thus we have to rely on guesses, mere hunches.

But maybe it is better for us to keep guessing. Maybe it is better for us not to know. Maybe it is better for us to be clueless about the economy. Maybe we just don’t care. Maybe we just don’t want to know. After all, information, though hard to digest, is just a click away. Maybe we have made youth an excuse to not care about these stuff because maybe we do not have to think about them. Maybe we have deemed it irrelevant to know how poor we are. Maybe it is better for us to not know so that (unlike people from highly industrialized countries who hoard and save and keep their money) we won’t change our spending patters, thus keeping the money, finances and assets rolling inside the country, which could probably keep the economy afloat. Or maybe that is just some ridiculous idea we have heard through he grapevine which we use to impress people on our knowledge about the topic.

We can have a million and one guesses, but the truth remains that, the youth sector is misinformed and almost even clueless about the topic at hand. And maybe, just maybe, we would start to care once we know enough about this crisis.

But who am I to know? I am just some ignorant brat who knows absolutely nothing about the economy, and has enough time on his hands to start writing about his generation’s depressing cluelessnes on the factors that affect the way we live.

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