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With the Kavanaugh Hearings, a Generational Change

Who are we kidding? Nobody is getting very much work done today. We are all riveted by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

I won't take up much of your time as you watch today's testimony. But one of the many things that strikes me about today is how a generational torch has been passed. As a nation, we're no longer talking about and debating the Baby Boomers' behavior in the 1960s. Did this person support the draft? What is his Vietnam service record? Did he inhale?

Instead, we're talking about jarring, ugly events alleged to have taken place between Gen Xers in the early 1980s. As a Gen Xer myself, it dawned on me that today is the first time I've seen my generation revealed in full, raw view in such an important national context. Under the proverbial klieg lights of the national spotlight. We Gen Xers are the small, quiet generation. We're used to be being overlooked -- dare I say ignored -- next to the Millennials and the Baby Boomers. We are accustomed to our national discourse focusing on 1968, not 1982. We Gen Xers remember a lot about the latter, and little to nothing about the former.

Today is a reminder that we Gen Xers are the grown ups now, even though a small part of us doesn't want to admit that we're old. We are in our 40s and 50s. We are in the proverbial prime of our lives, at the pinnacle of our chosen careers and earning power, the CEOs and senior managers populating corporate America. We are even old enough and experienced enough to become Supreme Court Justices. If our past behavior doesn't prevent it, that is.

When we Gen Xers seek national office, it will follow that our past will be open to intense review. As it should be. As it deserves to be. We Gen Xers may not have fought in Vietnam, but we will have to grapple with our own pasts when we seek higher national office. What happened in 1988 won't stay in 1988. Not anymore.

I don't know where I'm taking this at the moment because I'm so immersed in the live television proceedings. But today, at least to me, represents a sea change. A generational sea change. And for the record, I believe her.

Click here for my more recent companion post, "Come at Me, Bro: Where Have All the Grown Ups Gone?"


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