I just got finished watching the older movie, Red Dawn, the other day and it struck me how out of touch modern American teenagers are to the protagonists in the film. I get it, the film is an homage to hyperbolic patriotism in the fight against a foreign invasion as unlikely as the scenario could be even in the heyday of US-USSR global bipolar disorder.
With dozens acknowledged insurgencies world-wide and realistically hundreds in reality (there are an estimated three hundred in India alone), these partisan scenarios played out against internecine rivalries for power within or around various nation-states are ubiquitous. Overwhelmingly, war is a young man’s endeavor ranging from the pre-pubescent fighters in the Lords Resistance Army to the twenty and thirty-somethings that made up the bulk of the fighters in Northern Ireland, Chechnya and Afghanistan among the innumerable ranks of trigger pullers battling for some cause world-wide.
But I have to wonder just how fit the modern American teenager is for this kind of fighting whether initiated by a foreign invasion or the far more likely notion of battling a brutal and repressive regime from DC visited against its own citizens resisting the increasingly totalitarian notions of Potomac America where freedom demands a license and laws are so legion that one can’t walk through a day without violating some obscure Federal statute.
America’s youth seem to be fatally tethered to a need for information which has become so addictive that it is hard to pry one’s children from the phones and computers that shadow, if not dominate, their every waking minute and hour. One would think that a forward-looking mind that has access to the greatest store of knowledge ever in human civilization would render a new golden age peopled by superior thinkers, new inventions and new areas of cognition that would propel us forward into a brightly lit future of unlimited potential.
Not so much.