Generation Z is the new and upcoming generation. Born between 1997 and 2012, Gen Z has been growing up during a time of change – in many aspects. No other generation has ever had such unlimited access to information and connection via social platforms. This has created discussions and movements, and many have strong political opinions at a young age. Therefore, Gen Z is known to be a socially conscious generation with strong voices. But is Generation Z actually woke or just sensitive?
During the past 20 years, our society has changed tremendously. Technological development, social media, political movements, and increased globalization are a few of the many reasons for our world aswe know it today. Gen Z are children of a society in movement, fostered by new values, norms, and expectations. Therefore, it’s not strange that Gen Z is referred to as a woke generation. Growing up with various social media platforms, political education has never been easier. You can educate yourself and most importantly – educate others. Many Zoomers are outspoken about climate change, social injustice, homophobia and have a high value on diversity and social responsibility. However, there has been a debate about whether Gen Z is too sensitive. The expression “Snowflake generation” has occurred as a way to describe young people who are easily offended and upset.
So is it true? Is Gen Z a snowflake generation, too politically correct, stiff, and overly sensitive? Politically correct? Yes. Stiff? When it’s needed. Overly sensitive? Both yes and no. The issues Gen Z addresses might occur exaggerated for someone privileged, for someone who can’t align themself with these values, simply because they never have felt the feeling of being neglected, disrespected, or unequally treated. Snowflake or not, our society needs to make an active effort in order to be inclusive and diverse. It can be an uncomfortable conversation and it’s mostly easier to joke about an issue rather than address it. Nonetheless, we all have a responsibility to engage in the process of making a change and not diminish young, strong voices by calling them oversensitive.
Some may consider that being woke equates to being sensitive. But if sensitivity generates a more diverse and accepting society, so be it. Gen Z are snowflakes. Maybe a little bit sensitive. Although, Gen Z is woke. Woke snowflakes.