Pontifications

Saturday Screeds: Millenial Doorkickers

Today’s article was brought to you in its entirety by Raven Concealment Systems – concealment gear for every combatant.

We watched an interesting discussion on FB the other day. It was in response to an article about millenial members of SWAT teams, published on Officer.com. John “Chappy” Chapman posted the first comment. Michael Goerlich (one of Raven Concealment’s HMFICs) posted the second. We just enjoyed the popcorn. Mad Duo

Saturday Screeds: Millenial Doorkickers

Millenials an Gen Xers on SWAT

An excerpt from the officer.com article that began the discussion.

What differentiates Millennials from Gen Xers on SWAT? There are many differences, but one that is commonly observed is entitlement. Many feel Millennials have been entitled their entire life and thus do not conform to the Gen X mindset of hard work and working your way up the food chain.

This entitlement attitude can be reflected in different areas on the SWAT team including receiving weapons such as long guns, assignment of a specialty skill, wanting to receive all of the related training possible on their timeline, believing they have the right to a newer take-home police vehicle, and the belief that they should be sent straight to the top of the list in leadership positions with minimal time and experience on the team. You get the idea. Millennials may come across as having a “give it to me now” attitude rather than “let me earn it.”

You Would Be Wise to Watch

Chappy’s initial remark.

Interesting. But hear this millennials… as a GenX guy, this article is spot on about how we had to come up. You would be wise as an FNG to watch, listen and learn.

If you have something to contribute, say something. But after you talk I’d advise to to immediately switch back to receive mode and don’t whine if your brilliant prognostication is ignored. It’s what we did when we were FNGs, and it’s how we learned to be OG.

Coddling you will lead us down the path of the team being weaker when we leave than when we got there, and that’s not going to happen on Genx’s watch.

Just my opinion. I’m sure some other old SWAT guys will disagree.

RCS Copia – Bring enough for everyone.

That’s How It Works

Goerlich’s initial response.

I think most old guys (myself included, as I enter my 20th year in the professional world) have a revisionist historical perspective on just how much we “shut our mouths and opened our ears” when we were young.

This isn’t a “millenial thing.” It is the hallmark of youth, ESPECIALLY of males between the ages of 18-27, to assume that they have it all figured out, and that the old fuddieduddies are just dinosaurs who haven’t realized how outdated and irrelevant they and their practices are.

When you guys were young cops or SWAT dudes, you thought you were hard-dick as fuck. You thought you were smarter than the average bear. And while you might have grudgingly admitted that these old guys knew a couple things, you’d have been extremely reluctant to admit that you didn’t actually “know” anything about how to do your job — you just had theories and ideas of how it was gonna be, or how it should be.

It’s as old as human existence. The old guys always think the young guys are stupid, over-eager, ignorant, lazy, and entitled. And the young guys always think the old guys are dinosaurs who just didn’t get the memo that their kind was extinct, because they have old ideas based on old, irrelevant experiences.

They’re both right, to a degree. That’s how it works.

Whadya Reckon?

The discussion continued from there. How would you have responded? What’s your take on the article?

Oh, and FYSA, we mean on the actual content of the article. We’re not looking for another tired and pedantic discussion about the use of the word operator. We’d like to have an intelligent conversation about a topic that’s important to us.

MD

The RCS Morrigan is now available for LC9, as well as for numerous Glocks and S&Ws.

Mad Duo, Breach-Bang& CLEAR!

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9 Comments

  1. I’m a little sick of hearing people bitch about the Millennial Generation when it comes to their service to their country, and their community.

    The so called “Spoiled, Video Game Generation” have fought the two longest wars in American history. And no, they did not return home to the scorn and disdain that their Vietnam brethren did (Thank the deity of your choice that embarrassment has ended) but they have returned home to a country that is largely unaffected, positively or negatively, by their experiences in combat. This has made them outsiders not only to the generations that served before them, but also outsiders to their own generation, who didn’t serve.

    Yes, the military and LE communities have made some effort to appeal to Millennial sensibilities, but the overwhelming amount of adaptation has been the Millennial generation adapting to the military and LE. Of course they don’t have the exact sensibilities of the generation that preceded them, so that generation scorns them. And, at the same time, they have changed just enough to be alien to the civilians in their own generation.

    There are “Spoiled Millennials” who are getting out of the military now who did 15 years of service, all of it, ALL OF IT, during war. I dare most of you to walk up to one of those 28 year olds and tell them they haven’t earned anything yet. When you’re done picking up your teeth come back and talk to me.

    “It is said that what is called “the spirit of an age” is something to which one cannot return. That this spirit gradually dissipates is due to the world’s coming to an end. For this reason, although one would like to change today’s world back to the spirit of one hundred years or more ago, it cannot be done. Thus it is important to make the best out of every generation.”
    ― Tsunetomo Yamamoto, Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai

  2. The children now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise.

  3. I am aFOG (forgetful old guy) whose SWAT experience tracks back to the 1980’s. The article outlined a lot ofmy experience back then. I’m not sure that I was all that quiet and thankful for my position on the team but the issuance of some inadequate gear sure rang true.

    I was selected prior to my buddy who actuallyhad some tactical insight as a USMC vet. Why? In large part because team elders knew that I would not challenge the status quo in any significant way. The Marine eventually was selected and perhaps somewhat chastised by his initial rejection he was even quieter than I was. Slowly his experience level won the day and he became a significant contributer. His more recent military experience helped sharpen some things up and the team improved significantly as a result.

    Fast forward to today and you will find numerous young military vets in your organizations. Some of them have a lifetime of door kicking experience crammed into a few weeks or months of deployment. We cannot afford to make these youngsters,”wait their turn.” they have something to add to the mix right now. Sure, they need our guidance to relate their war time experience to the civilian world and that is our responsibility. It doesn’t mean that we should be dicks about it.

    Remember these kids are not challenging us as much as the world at large is challenging us. It doesn’t matter how hard we train if we’re not upgrading tactics and techniques. If we fail to upgrade as we go we may be getting really good at doing things the wrong way. And that will get people killed.

    1. Excellent comment, I fully agree about utilizing the military experience of the rising generation to better, not just SWAT and Law Enforcement; but America’s businesses and its society as a whole.

      I was never on a SWAT team, or a LEO, but I served for two years in combat zones in the Marine Corps in the Infantry and in advisor/training billets. Having enlisted in the Marine Corps straight out of college after 9/11in order to go infantry (because I wasn’t in the physical shape to pass IOC after 4 1/2 years of reading, writing, and drinking beer); I was 10 years older then the rest of my peer group, me being a GenXer, them being Millennial’s born in the mid 1980s. Going from graduating Magna Cum Laude to Parris Island in the course of a month was jarring to say the least; but after Boot Camp, SOI, and three or four month’s in the Fleet, I was out-shooting, out-swimming, out-lifting, and running 18-22 year-olds into the ground in my late twenties and early thirties, and before I EAS’d, the power’s-that -be were trying to send me to OCS and recruit me to MARSOC (but that’s different story). This after having done little physical activity since I wrestled in high school. That said, it was hard, but my senior Marines respected the fact that I had a college degree, that I had given up a (lucrative) civilian career to chose to fight along side them, and that I brought a level of life experience in the civilian world that they didn’t get in the Corps. They didn’t treat me different than any other Boot(FNG) when it came to field-day, or if I couldn’t hang on a hump or on a morning PT-death run to the front gate, but they didn’t have to deal with babysitting my ass either, and I took care of business, so I was pretty much left alone to do my thing on Libo and what little free time I had.

      The Millennials I observed coming up with me in the Corps fit the stereotype of your pampered, disrespectful, video game-playing, smart ass- know-nothing punk at first, with a few exceptions. And, there were a couple that never got over Mama never letting them leave the house and go play outside in the dirt like boys are supposed to, but over the course of my Marine Corps career, I saw a lot of these young punks morph into battle hardened, salt-dog Marines and sailor’s. One particular example was with a kid I went through SOI into the Fleet and my first deployment with. At SOI, he had been dropped back in training because he had had trouble adapting to this new world, and had gone UA (AWOL for you Army dogs). He talked about suicide, and was generally quiet and taciturn. Not completely worthless, but not somebody you’d want behind you in the stack as you’re about to clear a room in Fallujah or Ramadi. However, upon deployment and his being attached to the security element of an EOD team in a part of our unit’s AO that was the most dangerous in Iraq at that time, his true colors came through and he rose to the occasion. After the EOD team was hit by a complex ambush on a dirt road along the Euphrates just East of Ramadi (on Friday the 13th no less), this young Lance Corporal left his vehicle under fire, helped two wounded Marines, and pulled another Marine out from a burning and overturned HMMWV, whose broken leg had been pinned under the turret, saving his life for which he earned a Bronze Star (he probably would have earned a Navy Cross, but had left his rifle in the Vic, as the other Marines provided cover fire). This experience taught me a lesson: Never underestimate what morale, purpose, dedication, good hard-training, and love of your brother’s and comrades can inspire in people.

      Having been a nasty civilian for few year’s now; I have to say that as a whole, the Millennial Generation has earned the opprobrium and disdain that many older American’s, like myself, feel for them. Or, to put it another way, they haven’t earned respect by doing or accomplishing anything like previous generations of American’s have. That said, this is rather the fault of our decaying society, which is falling apart. They do not know what it is to be an American. They were raised in broken homes, indoctrinated in government schools, taught that it is a fundamental right for two men to marry each other, prayed at the alter of the Kardashian’s and Father Facebook, and do not know basic concepts such as Wrong and Right. This is their parents fault, whom are mostly Baby Boomers. They’ve been taught that all that came before was racist, sexist, bigoted, destroys the planet, and had little redeeming value when viewed through “Science”. They know nothing of the values, ideals, and sacrifices that created the greatest society and nation in the course of human history. They have to be told and shown that they know Jack Scheisse.

      The answer to this problem is to be harder on Millennials, not soft. They have to prove themselves. They are the Generation of the Wussification of America. As Goethe said, we must demand more of the individual, “Treat a man as he is and he will remain as he is. Treat a man as he can and should be and he will become as he can and should be.” The fact of the matter is, that no matter what happens between GenXer’s and Millennials on a SWAT team or in the workforce, if they both don’t instill in their children the love of Liberty and Freedom and Morality, and the precious God-given gift that is the United States of America, then the next generation or two, like Ronald Reagan said, will be born into tyranny and slavery.

  4. I agree with strych9, it’s dependent upon the individual. That said, I am a millennia but I shun many in my age bracket because of the above references. It took me 10 years in my LEO career to get where I’m at and based on the majority’s work ethics and core values, I’m not exactly ecstatic about what the future holds. The pickings are getting slim in my career field and the generational gap is not the only problem.

  5. I think it depends entirely on the individual.

    Some of the most entitled, lazy bastards I have ever met were 50+ and were total dicks that wanted everyone else to carry their water while they told us all how it was.

    OTOH, some of the most entitled, lazy bastards I’ve ever met were 18-27 and were total dicks that wanted everyone else to carry their water while they told us all how it was.

    Being an asshole doesn’t have an age limit and people don’t miraculously become good and hardworking as they approach the age where AARP is going to send them a card. No matter how old you are, respect is earned rather than given. People who have reached MENTAL adulthood know this. Bitches make broad generalizations and whine about another group of people based on something like what generation they’re from.

    1. right on, ill quote what a ranger buddy of mine once said..”I don’t care what you’ve done in the past, I only care about what you’re currently doing”

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