Sometimes it feels like many of the problems in the world are being blamed on the baby boomer generation. The consensus seems to be that the 75 million of us born between 1946 and 1964 are the root of our current woes. Here are a few examples of problems the baby boomers have supposedly caused:
But are all of these ills really the fault of baby boomers? Don’t forget about the incredible growth of creativity and business that we are instrumental in driving.
Baby boomers have been categorized as a bit me-centered. We are perhaps slightly more focused on the here-and-now versus the long term. But we put in an honest day’s work, love our family, and always strive to succeed.
If manufacturers would create a work environment that supported older employees and encouraged them to keep working, maybe that pending shortage of skilled workers could be addressed. Jobs should be designed to better accommodate older employees with flexible hours, job sharing, and part-time work. Employees are often forced out after a certain age regardless of their ability to continue effectively in their role. With modern advancements, we are living longer and more productive lives. Given the option, many boomers would prefer to work rather than retire.
Do kids deserve an inheritance? Rather than an entitlement, shouldn’t this money be viewed as a gift? Until our children begin struggling to make ends meet today while simultaneously saving for tomorrow they will not understand the sacrifice required. I personally encourage my parents to enjoy their lives with the money they have earned and saved. Whatever is left, if anything, I will consider a bonus.
Wall Street has had its bubbles and recessions for decades. Baby boomers have played a major role in fueling the meteoric growth of the stock market. Is it fair or reasonable to blame us for selling some of our investments to fund our retirement life? That is why we weathered the volatility and invested in the first place.
With 10,000 of us reaching the age of 65 each day, it is time to stop blaming the boomers and instead find more ways to incorporate us into the future. We have proved ourselves a force to be reckoned with and are going to be around for a long time.
Dave Bernard is not yet retired but has begun his due diligence to plan for a satisfying retirement. With a focus on the non-financial aspects of retiring, he shares his discoveries and insights on his blog Retirement–Only the Beginning.