Subscribe for 33¢ / day

What is wrong with the kids these days?

All they care about is staying alive, which is a frivolous thing to care about when they should be sitting in school, learning math equations and scientific theories they will likely never use.

Instead, all they’ve been doing is organizing vigils, walkouts, protests, marches and visits to state capitals all across the country.

It’s all under the guise of preventing mass shootings, but really they just want to get out of class. They don’t know the meaning of hard work. Why, some of these kids don’t even know how to use a broom.

I knew how to use brooms and rakes and pitchforks before I was even born. That’s how early my parents started teaching me the Things That Matter. Like brooming and raking and pitch-forking.

“Modern” skills like activism and computer programming and the ability to speak multiple languages are far too useful for the future and not shackled to the past in which I was raised.

And now these kids think the only thing that matters is “safety.” Puh. Why, when my grandfather was a child, he had to walk barefoot through zombie-infested fields and fight off dragons with a stick he whittled from a blade of grass. Back when people really knew the value of grass.

And the schools are encouraging such shenanigans? Schools are for education and learning only, which is why we force them to throw around basketballs and dodgeballs multiple times per week. Also, activism and getting involved in national events is not a life lesson that is important for young people to learn early. No, they need to wait.

We keep telling them they're the future, but what we really meant was that they shouldn't have opinions until that future arrives. Which is whenever we decide. 

Obviously, they are too young to know what they really think, anyway. I am an adult and therefore entitled to my opinions, but not these upstarts. Since they are children, they undoubtedly are being manipulated by their parents or “the media” or Taylor Swift to think that gun violence in schools is something that could, maybe, actually be fixed.

Get breaking news sent instantly to your inbox

(Of course, the young people who planned counterprotests to the anti-gun violence protests — these young people are mature enough to know their own minds and have been raised right. It is good that they took time out of their school day for something so important.)

Teenagers shouldn’t be worrying about politics. They should be worrying about meeting adults’ expectations. After all, we’re only asking that they be good students, exceptional athletes, civically minded (but only if they agree with us), and able to hold down as many after-school jobs as we deem worthy of our estimation. Somewhere between two and seven sounds right.

After all, how else are they going to be able to afford the criminally high cost of post-secondary education, which is necessary in order to get basically any job that doesn’t involve wearing a headset while serving food?

To think that schools are actually telling students that they have “a voice” and that “they matter” is just another liberal, modern, newfangled approach. What’s next? Equal pay for women? Absurd.

Proper #adulting means arguing with people on Facebook, and being angry at everyone who disagrees with you. These kids have a lot to learn.


Contact Candy DenOuden at

You must be logged in to react.
Click any reaction to login.

Copy editor/Compass editor

Copy desk/Compass editor for the Rapid City Journal.