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What Gen Y Means to Occupy Movement and Presidential Election

February 05th, 2012

Hi All!

I recently came across a great blog post by Carol Phillips, a colleague of mine who is also a Millennial (aka: Gen Y) Expert, however she focuses on them as consumers, whereas I tend to focus on them more as employees. And Carol is also the President of BrandAmplitude, LLC and runs the Millennial Marketing blog.

The blog post she wrote, and that I’d like to share with you, is entitled: What the Occupy Movement Means to the Millennial Vote in 2012.

Here is an excerpt from Carol’s blog post:

In the recession-dominated four years since the last Presidential election, Gen Y has gone from being optimistic and ‘hopeful’ to discouraged and angry.  The shift seemed to have happened quite suddenly, triggered by the realization that trillions of stimulus dollars, gigantic industry takeovers and costly bank bailouts were insufficient to create jobs and give young adults a toehold in the economy.

Why ‘sudden’? Even as little as a year ago, I would never have predicted anything like the Occupy Wall Street movement. In fact, when Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert launched their “Rally to Restore Sanity/Fear” in Washington DC last October, I wondered whether it would resonate with a generation notable for its lack of protest and desire to work within the system to create change:

“… the truth is, this generation does care. They are caring by not participating, by disassociating. Stewart also understands this; he gets their approach. They are conservative liberals. They want to change the system without marching down Main Street. Without lowering themselves to the same tactics, name calling and bickering they detest. It’s hard to have a voice when you are disgusted by the tone of the conversation. So instead of joining, they are quiet rebels who challenge the status quo by the way they live, not how they protest. …. The “Rally to Restore Sanity” was a TV staged event they attended, not a grass roots rally they created. Just like Demand TV or ITunes, it was offered up and they clicked “attend.”

When you’re hurting, inequity is an easy concept to grasp — just ask any four year old.  In 2011, evidence of unfairness was easy to find.  The concept that lit the spark was growing lopsidedness in wealth distribution. The target of resentment was easy to find, as well – Wall Street. The way money is made by corporate fat cats and Wall Street bankers became the focus of Millennial discontent, not those who set the rules in Washington. This is good for Obama, and bad for Republicans who are more associated with the 1% than the 99%.

So, what does Carol think it will take to win the Millennial vote in 2012? Click here to read her entire blog post and see what she has to say!

Bye for now,

Lisa