The Time Machine by H.G. Wells has found a way to serve as a warning for many generations. The threat of nuclear holocaust served many baby-boomers living in the 20th century. It’s hard to imagine an even more perilous warning could emerge from the novel, but in 2015, I see a new parallel emerge.
In The Time Machine, the Eloi, a people from 800,000 years in the future, were totally helpless, had no drive, desires, curiosity and their sexuality was subdued into a generic homogenous state that was almost meaningless. They didn’t read books and, in fact, the books in the libraries had turned to dust from lack of use. They spent their days feasting in leisure. No one worked, laws were all gone and the people did nothing of consequence until the sirens sounded and then they obediently lined up to be eaten by the Morlocks – who were cannibals living in underground cities operating the machinery of their society.
The other day, I came to a horrifying realization
My fellow Millennials and I are the new Eloi.
We stare at screens all day; have no strong gender identification or drives; are so passive most of us don’t learn to drive until we absolutely have to; TBH many of us would really prefer a self driving car because we are so passive the decisions and stresses required by driving overwhelm us. Many of us are unemployed and have no prospects. Our food often arrives via the indispensible EBT card. What’s more, my fellow Millennials have been dosed with a cornucopia of drugs from the factories (run by the Morlocks) and many of us eat (and drink Starbucks daily) till we are obese enough to be led to slaughter. Our sitting habits are giving us no exercise to speak of and, even now, I type these words while sitting on the floor in front of a laptop.
We rant on Tumblr about social justice while expecting our parents to buy our food, take us places and house us. Our sense of entitlement is beyond belief. We feel we know it all. Yet most of us barely read anything other than our texts, friends’ Facebook statuses and our Twitter feed. We don’t know stuff – we Google something to find out about it or consult Wikipedia. And for all we know Google and Wikipedia could be run by the modern Morlocks and could tell us anything and we would believe it.
We are mocked by the baby boomers and Generation X as lazy. Perhaps we are. We can muster enthusiasm for our online activities, selfie taking and marathon gaming sessions. We are always up for a trip to Starbucks (hopefully someone else will drive) and a sickeningly sweet concoction that we know is anything but healthy.
Many of my friends rally around Bernie Sanders candidacy. “Feel the Bern” they keep repeating. But to be honest, I don’t want to feel Bernie up. I managed to read enough to know that unchecked socialism means government control of everything. Do I want that? No thanks. When I watched Bernie back down on Youtube and let the BLM protesters threaten to shut him down at his own lectern, I realized he was an Eloi too. He would gladly lead us all to the slaughter. No fight. No fortitude. Sanders is in modern linguistics – confrontation averse and courage challenged and has been eating from the public trough his entire adult life. Do I want to grow up and be like Sanders? Or Hillary? Or Joe Biden? Hell no.
I don’t want to be an Eloi. I don’t think my fellow Millennials want to be Eloi either.
In the Time Machine the Time Traveler tries to shake the Eloi out of their suicidal complacency and weakness. Today another two men have filled that role. Donald Trump and Dr. Ben Carson. I heard Trump all too clearly when he spoke at an Iowa high school and decried drugs, alcohol and smokes. He said it without fear and without regret and even our teachers today preach about the failure of drug wars and that smoking weed isn’t a crime, pointing to the President in the White House as an example of a weed “success story” we can aspire to. Dr. Carson has inspired me to read more than ever – real books. After hearing how his mom forced him to read, even though she herself was illiterate so that he could escape the slavery of being uneducated, I almost started crying like John Boehner.
My views have changed a lot in four years. I will vote in my second Presidential election for Donald Trump because I have learned a lot and my eyes have been opened to my personal plight and the plight of millions just like me. I have learned that “Hope” is no substitute for Action and “Change” is only worthwhile if it makes the people and world better, more prosperous and healthier. I want to be part of a generation eager to work; eager to drive; eager to do something worthwhile besides accumulating likes on a really cool selfie. I don’t want to be led to a future slaughter by a Hillary Clinton or a Bernie Sanders. No jobs, no future. Same old platitudes and nothing ever gets better – only worse.
I want a better future for myself and my generation. I want us to be the greatest generation! The ones that fixed the world by being strong, decisive and smart. The ones who forsook a sense of entitlement for a desire to earn our respect and pride – so it would mean something. The ones who invent things that would make the Wright Brothers and Nikola Tesla green with envy. And I’m not talking about an iPhone 935.
It can happen. I’m seeing a change in many of my fellow millennials. It’s like we’ve woken up from a long sleep.
A big shout out to H.G. Wells (and my English teacher for making me read it) and his dusty old book for helping me to awaken my inner Time Traveler.