It’s not ok to say ‘OK boomer’

RASHMEE ROSHAN LALL November 8, 2019

I’m not a baby boomer but I still have an issue with the linguistic weapon of generational warfare: “OK Boomer”.

George Mason University economics professor Tyler Cowen, a boomer, is irritated. Professor Cowen wrote on Bloomberg View that he finds it a “flippant yet passive retort from millennials or members of Generation Z”. He rejects “the generational stereotyping” the phrase “OK boomer” embodies. “It wouldn’t be acceptable to baldly criticize older people simply for being old. So why is it OK to use a circumlocution that does the same thing?”

Why indeed?

Generational change is best negotiated by the new generation taking charge while being tolerant (dare I say respectful?) of those whose time has come and gone.

Professor Cowen points out: “Would we think much of any boomer wearing a T-shirt proclaiming, “Not Impressed, Kid,” “Sure, Kiddo” or “Nice Try, Kid”?