Why Millennials Are Socialists
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Why Millennials Are Socialists

The rise of the new American left.

Why Millennials Are Socialists
Wikimedia Commons

Socialism has always been a dirty word in the United States. With some notable exceptions from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the socialist movement in the US has always been relatively weak — that is until now.

Ironically, the election of Donald Trump may have made the US Left stronger than it has been in decades. After the election, membership in the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) tripled, making it one of the largest socialist organizations in modern US political history. The same has been true for other socialist groups as well. It seems as if, for the first time in a century, socialism is having a moment in the US.

And behind this socialist wave are overwhelmingly millennials, who have been behind much of the massive increase in membership in socialist groups. Studies have shown that the majority of millennials reject capitalism and identify more with the working-class than any other generation.

Right-wingers and liberals use this as evidence that socialism is only for naive young people. It ties into the common neoliberal attitude that neoliberalism itself is inevitable. But this is a vast oversimplification.

The reason us millennials are drawn to socialism is not merely because we are idealistic. It's because our generation has grown up in a world which made us realize the central lie at the heart of capitalism. We were told that if we worked hard and went to school, we would be successful. Many of us did that, only to be saddled with debt and only able to work low-wage jobs. A study last year found that millennials were by far the job market's biggest losers.

And while we continued to work just to survive, wealth became increasingly concentrated on the top. The US is now one of the most unequal countries in the world, with the top one person taking in about 20 percent of the wealth. Despite the "American Dream," class mobility in the US is almost non-existent. And if you aren't rich, data has shown that politicians do not care at all what you think.

The US has also been at war for most of our lives. Despite the fact that you are much more likely to die from your furniture than from terrorists, millennials have seen the dog whistle of "terrorism" justify the shredding of civil liberties that we were told apparently made America great.

Ultimately, millennials have realized that this is nothing new. This country, built on stolen indigenous land on the backs of African slaves, has only ever truly worked for the white elite. We realize that America was never great.

The Democrats will not save us either. They discuss wanting to change the oppressive structures in this country, while being invested in their success. They talk about representing the common people as they take money from corporate lobbyists who profit off the suffering of workers both here and overseas.

Socialism, despite its association with Soviet gulags and firing squads, is ultimately about giving power back to the people. Instead of having a system where we work tirelessly just to survive as the rich rake in billions, socialism a system that works for everyone.

That is what we millennials are trying to achieve.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments