T’Millennial’ is a term often associated with “basement-dwellers” and “politically-inexperienced” Sanders supporters. Sadly, these stereotypes aren’t wrong and the number of young adults living with their parents remains at a 75-year high. Yet the image of the triggered hippie liberal that often dominates the media is not representative of the whole.
When surveyed, young people supported free market ideals at a 63 percent majority against protectionist regulations. Yes, we may live in our parent’s basements, but not all of us are trying to leech off of other people’s money. Even as the liberal mainstream media has effectively made the term ‘conservative’ a dirty word, this places 63 percent of millennials (whether they like it or not) on the right side of the political spectrum.
In fact, when compared with previous generations, millennials are more likely to be conservative than Baby Boomers and Generation X were at the same age.
Many of us are even willing to take right-wing positions on some social issues. Back in June of last year, the Washington Times reported that a 53 percent of millennials believe that abortion should be illegal in all if not most circumstances. While these views appear to be absent from the mainstream, even us ‘politically uneducated’ types realize how Washington has let us down.
The American Dream of growing up, providing for yourself and your family, owning a house and most importantly, a dog, is near dead to us. Student loan default rates are obscenely high and the cost of living is off the charts. When combined with the political socialization of growing up in the middle of a financial crisis, only 45 percent of Millennials consider themselves to be a risk taker. The American Dream isn’t gone, but Millennial faith in Washington DC, but I have personally observed that we seem to have lost our persistence and the will to bounce back from failure. It is this fear of failure with no way to climb back up which terrifies Millennials into back into their parent’s basement.
This is why the margin of victory for Democrats in the 2016 election shrank by 5 percentage points among Millennials from 2012. We may not be political experts, but we know when things aren’t working. Eight years of Obama may have seemed like tyranny at the time, but his legacy has primed millennials to leave their parent’s basements and settle on the right.