Generation Jones Part 2

Last February I blogged about an article in Newsweek about Generation Jones.   These are baby boomers who were born during the later boomer years, 1954 to 1965.  Well the Los Angeles Times had an article, The Rise of the Late Baby Boomers, last month about President elect Barack Obama and his fellow late boomers, aka Generation Jones.

Anyway I can definitely relate to this article.  I’m a late boomer born in the 60’s.  I was too young to really know what was going on during the Vietnam War as this paragraph states:

Late boomers were doing wheelies on bikes and playing with dolls back when early boomers were fighting in Vietnam, avoiding the draft, singing along with the Mamas & the Papas, mourning a president, marching for civil rights and trekking to Woodstock.

But I do remember Watergate, The Carpenters, The Jackson 5, Steely Dan, All In The Family, The Partridge Family and of course Soul Train.  I never owned any eight tracks but I still have my album collection.  And I collected 45’s.

Obama’s peers were defined by Watergate, stagflation, gas lines and 20% interest rates. Their cultural touchstones were groups like the Carpenters and Steely Dan (on cassette or eight-track tapes, of course), and shows like “All in the Family” and “Charlie’s Angels” (you know who you are). In Hawaii, young Barry Obama was tuning into “Soul Train,” which began its 35-year run in 1971.

The postwar baby boomers were those Americans born from 1946 to 1964. But Jonathan Pontell, a Los Angeles marketing and political consultant, says generational experience, not birthrates, is what defines a generation. Several years ago he labeled the late boomers, those born after 1954, as “Generation Jones.”

Members of Generation Jones, which includes the 50-year-old Pontell, were too young to really experience the tumult of the 1960s, though some of them were around to see it. “We were wide-eyed, not tie-dyed,” he said.

“I remember some older kids in my neighborhood offered to take me along to Woodstock. When I announced the good news to my parents at dinner, they said, ‘Finish your broccoli and go to bed. You’re not going to Woodstock. You’re 11 years old.’ “

You can read the entire article here.

CNN.com also has an article about Generation Jones titled Baby Boomers out, ‘cuspers’ in.  The writer of this article calls us ‘cuspers.’

Cuspers, the age cohort that have been living in the shadow of the boomers, now have even more reasons to stake out their own separate identity and values.

It’s taken a long time for this rising demographic to be recognized as a distinct generation in its own right. They’ve been called “late boomers” because they missed the formative boomer experiences of the ’60s, such as civil rights and anti-war protests.

They’ve been called tweeners or cuspers because they straddle the divide between Boomers and Gen X. American social commentator Jonathan Pontell has worked hard to establish their identity as Generation Jones.

There’s still debate about whether cuspers are even a generation apart from boomers and where the generational boundaries lie. But those arguments miss the key point, which is that Americans want change.

In Obama, they see the hopeful prospect of a new generation taking over. And in these dark days, they’re hoping against hope that his generation can usher in new, better values to guide the nation. His victory has been portrayed as the end of Vietnam War politics and the 1960s “culture wars.”

You can read the entire article here.

One response

  1. […] mentioned (see Please Don’t Call Me Jones, Part One), similar commentary and thoughtful musings can be found all over the blogosphere, by and about those of us who have celebrated somewhere […]

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