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The Beloit College Mindset List for the Class of 2014
Most students entering college for the first time this fall—the Class of 2014—were born in 1992.
For these students, Benny Hill, Sam Kinison, Sam Walton, Burt Parks and Tony Perkins have always been dead.
1. Few in the class know how to write in cursive.
2. Email is just too slow, and they seldom if ever use snail mail.
3. “Go West, Young College Grad” has always implied “and don’t stop until you get to Asia…and learn Chinese along the way.”
4. Al Gore has always been animated.
5. Los Angelinos have always been trying to get along.
6. Buffy has always been meeting her obligations to hunt down Lothos and the other blood-suckers at Hemery High.
7. “Caramel macchiato” and “venti half-caf vanilla latte” have always been street corner lingo.
8. With increasing numbers of ramps, Braille signs, and handicapped parking spaces, the world has always been trying harder to accommodate people with disabilities.
9. Had it remained operational, the villainous computer HAL could be their college classmate this fall, but they have a better chance of running into Miley Cyrus’s folks on Parents’ Weekend.
10. A quarter of the class has at least one immigrant parent, and the immigration debate is not a big priority…unless it involves “real” aliens from another planet.
11. John McEnroe has never played professional tennis.
12. Clint Eastwood is better known as a sensitive director than as Dirty Harry.
13. Parents and teachers feared that Beavis and Butt-head might be the voice of a lost generation.
14. Doctor Kevorkian has never been licensed to practice medicine.
15. Colorful lapel ribbons have always been worn to indicate support for a cause.
16. Korean cars have always been a staple on American highways.
17. Trading Chocolate the Moose for Patti the Platypus helped build their Beanie Baby collection.
18. Fergie is a pop singer, not a princess.
19. They never twisted the coiled handset wire aimlessly around their wrists while chatting on the phone.
20. DNA fingerprinting and maps of the human genome have always existed.
21. Woody Allen, whose heart has wanted what it wanted, has always been with Soon-Yi Previn.
22. Cross-burning has always been deemed protected speech.
23. Leasing has always allowed the folks to upgrade their tastes in cars.
24. “Cop Killer” by rapper Ice-T has never been available on a recording.
25. Leno and Letterman have always been trading insults on opposing networks.
26. Unless they found one in their grandparents’ closet, they have never seen a carousel of Kodachrome slides.
27. Computers have never lacked a CD-ROM disk drive.
28. They’ve never recognized that pointing to their wrists was a request for the time of day.
29. Reggie Jackson has always been enshrined in Cooperstown.
30. “Viewer Discretion” has always been an available warning on TV shows.
31. The first computer they probably touched was an Apple II; it is now in a museum.
32. Czechoslovakia has never existed.
33. Second-hand smoke has always been an official carcinogen.
34. “Assisted Living” has always been replacing nursing homes, while Hospice has always been an alternative to hospitals.
35. Once they got through security, going to the airport has always resembled going to the mall.
36. Adhesive strips have always been available in varying skin tones.
37. Whatever their parents may have thought about the year they were born, Queen Elizabeth declared it an “Annus Horribilis.”
38. Bud Selig has always been the Commissioner of Major League Baseball.
39. Pizza jockeys from Domino’s have never killed themselves to get your pizza there in under 30 minutes.
40. There have always been HIV positive athletes in the Olympics.
41. American companies have always done business in Vietnam.
42. Potato has always ended in an “e” in New Jersey per vice presidential edict.
43. Russians and Americans have always been living together in space.
44. The dominance of television news by the three networks passed while they were still in their cribs.
45. They have always had a chance to do community service with local and federal programs to earn money for college.
46. Nirvana is on the classic oldies station.
47. Children have always been trying to divorce their parents.
48. Someone has always gotten married in space.
49. While they were babbling in strollers, there was already a female Poet Laureate of the United States.
50. Toothpaste tubes have always stood up on their caps.
51. Food has always been irradiated.
52. There have always been women priests in the Anglican Church.
53. J.R. Ewing has always been dead and gone. Hasn’t he?
54. The historic bridge at Mostar in Bosnia has always been a copy.
55. Rock bands have always played at presidential inaugural parties.
56. They may have assumed that parents’ complaints about Black Monday had to do with punk rockers from L.A., not Wall Street.
57. A purple dinosaur has always supplanted Barney Google and Barney Fife.
58. Beethoven has always been a dog.
59. By the time their folks might have noticed Coca Cola’s new Tab Clear, it was gone.
60. Walmart has never sold handguns over the counter in the lower 48.
61. Presidential appointees have always been required to be more precise about paying their nannies’ withholding tax, or else.
62. Having hundreds of cable channels but nothing to watch has always been routine.
63. Their parents’ favorite TV sitcoms have always been showing up as movies.
64. The U.S, Canada, and Mexico have always agreed to trade freely.
65. They first met Michelangelo when he was just a computer virus.
66. Galileo is forgiven and welcome back into the Roman Catholic Church.
67. Ruth Bader Ginsburg has always sat on the Supreme Court.
68. They have never worried about a Russian missile strike on the U.S.
69. The Post Office has always been going broke.
70. The artist formerly known as Snoop Doggy Dogg has always been rapping.
71. The nation has never approved of the job Congress is doing.
72. One way or another, “It’s the economy, stupid” and always has been.
73. Silicone-gel breast implants have always been regulated.
74. They’ve always been able to blast off with the Sci-Fi Channel.
75. Honda has always been a major competitor on Memorial Day at Indianapolis.
Some interesting posts that I’ve checked out in the last week….
SEVEN THINGS NEVER TO SAY TO A VETERAN
1. “Thank you for your service, but I don’t think we should have been there in the first place.”
All that’s needed is, “Thank you for your service.” Anything more shows that you really are more interested in what you think, and that you think your opinion is of more importance than everyone else’s.
Everyone has an opinion about the war but not everyone wants to hear it, says Ryan Kules, an Army veteran who spent 18 months at Walter Reed recuperating from wounds. People often use him as a sounding board for their take on the war.
“People should recognize their opinion is a personal view and not necessarily an appropriate thing to share with someone who has obviously physical injuries from a conflict,” says Ryan Kules. This is especially true in the workplace.
2. “Is it worth it?”
People should understand that this is a multifacted question. The soldier and his family has done extensive research into the history of the region, the cultural differences, the needs, and also the politics. It is a highly subjective question, and usually the person who asks this has already made up their mind irrespective of the experience or education of the person they are addressing.
3. “Are you a lesbian?”
Don’t even ask what a newly returned veteran thinks about “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” It’s a deep conversation, and you might find yourself pulled into a direction you don’t want to go.
The idea that all women in the military are lesbians is not only archaic but it also plays into stereotypes, says Delilah Washburn, president of the National Association of State Women Veterans. A person’s choice about being out about orientation remains that–that person’s choice. Don’t assume and don’t be rude.
4. “You’re too rigid to deal with sudden changes.”
No one has asked you to get personal. Don’t ascribe personal attributes solely to being a soldier.
Because service members are forced to adhere to a rigid schedule, many civilians assume they are unable to think outside the box or adapt quickly. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Many veterans are among the most adaptable employees around.
“Former military have a resourcefulness, an adaptability to change,” says David Casey, a former U.S. Marine who is now vice president of workplace culture and chief diversity officer for WellPoint, No. 44 in The 2009 DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity. And despite standard operating procedures set in the military, “things never go as planned, and you have to accomplish your mission in all kinds of environments. The ability to be able to adapt is very important, especially in today’s corporate environment,” Casey adds.
5. “Do you have post-traumatic stress disorder?”
Unless you’re a qualified treatment specialist being sought out for help with PTSD, don’t ask. You might want to say: “I’m glad you’re back home.”
“If you are talking to someone about their injuries, then the best way to ask this is to let the veteran volunteer this information him or herself,” advises Kules.
6. “What’s the worst thing that happened to you over there?”
Do you really want to hear it? And why? Are you going to repeat it, blog it, twitter it? Use it for your own means? What happened is so deep, dark and personal. Many times it was life changing. This isn’t a topic for casual conversation, and again –you may find yourself in rougher waters than you’re able to cope with.
To non-veterans, this seems like a harmless question, but it’s inappropriate, especially in the workplace. “This is like asking someone, ‘What’s the worst day of your life? Tell me in detail’–no one wants to do that,” says Kules.
7. “Have you ever killed anyone?”
Just say, “I’m glad you’re home. Welcome back.”
This question invades the veteran’s privacy and it forces him or her to possibly relive painful memories. “The person asking this question doesn’t have any idea how the veteran may feel about the situation,” says Kules.
Washburn adds that this inquiry brings into question a veteran’s morality. “This goes deeper than an issue of sensitivity. There are things like faith-based value systems that make this question very personal,” says Washburn. “There should be some barriers.”