Rest Of The Story

It just wears you out. The lack of civility running rampant with these kids today. The more extreme examples? The two North Dakota “men”, and I use the term only to define their gender, who beat up a 17-year-old at a softball game in Devils Lake back in September. Or, closer to home, the July beating of Dakota Brekke by two thugs at Turtle Lake.


The victims were just minding their own business and, their attackers were bored. At least that’s what appears to be the motivation because no other explanation makes sense. And, the community always rallies around the victims AFTER the fact but, that really doesn’t deal with the issue which is, what I was taught, “live and let live.”

But the foregoing are just extreme examples of the contempt with which these type of kids seem to hold anyone who disagrees with them. Roberts Rules of Order were developed in 1876. Point, counter-point, rebuttal. I say my piece, you say yours, we debate. Each remaining quiet while the other is speaking out of mutual respect.

Common courtesy, eh? Not anymore. Not for people raised to get a trophy no matter what and taught they’re the center of the universe. On television shrieking their venom, assaulting anyone who disagrees and talking over the top of them. It’s the worst on television “news”. Get it out first, don’t care whether it’s true or who you hurt. You’re the only one who’s important.

On September 14th, Vogue magazine’s blog said it well. In addition to the Millennial sense of entitlement is the sickening speed of impersonal email, IMing, texting, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Tinder, Bumble ad nauseum. Every irrelevant, self-indulgent thought tossed out onto the Internet at the speed of light for OTHERS to suffer with no reflection. No one can interrupt you because you are the master of your own universe.

Forget, please, thank you, sir or maam. An emoticon will suffice at the end of your misspelled rant or taunt. I have to spend the first 2 weeks of martial arts class now disabusing some of my youngsters that my name’s not “Pat”. It’s “Mr. Merriman”. We aren’t peers. I was raised with the Southern ethic, “You give respect now so you’ll get respect when you’re an adult.”

Or, maybe the next time in court, I’ll just address the court as “Hey, Bill, Dann, Rhonda, or Jim”. Heck, what’s it matter, right? Well…hold on there a sec’, that whole going to jail for direct contempt thing rears its head. I mean they do wear that robe and all to garner respect and the deference they’re due. But, I digress.

We are rapidly losing our ability to communicate with these kids and, I’m watching Gen X’ers, yuppies and hippies falling prey too. It’s not discussion anymore…it’s discord and it’s rude, boorish, white trash…pick your adjective.

And, anti-Trumpers who think that the ends justifies the means…shut up! He’s not only YOUR President, he’s also the Commander-in-Chief. And, at some point, all this trespass, property damage and criminal assault/murder that you got to pass off as “protesting” under the previous administration? See previous sentence.

Because the inevitable result of anarchy and chaos is imposed order. And, I’m afraid dear militant Millenials that, at some point, the other shoe is going to drop. Either you’re going to grow up and actually have some skin in the game or, someone bigger, stronger and meaner is going to employ the same tactics on YOU. And, watch the metamorphosis, “Conservative: a liberal who’s been mugged or started actually paying taxes.” Pray for these kids!

Pat Merriman is the Dunn County State Attorney. He is a photographer and also officiates high school and college athletics events in the area.

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