Young adults, as a general rule, hate being told what to do. And you can't really blame people who have just gotten their independence, for not wanting to compromise it.
This current generation of twentysomethings seems especially prone to such individualism — after all, we are the "special snowflake" kids who got trophies just for participation. We were raised to believe that everything we do is praiseworthy. It is now socially acceptable — and even encouraged — to not only take a slew of photos of only your face, but also to put those selfies on the internet so other people have to look at them. This generation also gave rise to hipsters, who pin their entire social status on how "unique" they are.
The Tea Party refrain, "Don't Tread On Me," should resonate with us young adults. We hate, hate, hate being trodden on. This is part of how the GOP alienated young people: by saying no, same-sex couples cannot marry. No, we will not legalize marijuana.
But the biggest "no" of all comes from the other side of the aisle, where Democrats are shouting, "No, you cannot keep what you earn." This is followed by "no, you cannot keep your insurance or even purchase the insurance that you want, because we regulated the market to a point where you do not want or cannot afford any of the products." Then comes the cherry on top: "No, your phone calls and text messages and internet activities are not private. They belong to the NSA, too." These three big blunders are not lost on young voters — they're turning young voters against the Democrats and toward the political right.
We young adults as a generation are looking at our futures and seeing what pundit Kurt Schlichter, among a chorus of others, has plainly warned us about: "There’s no sugar-coating it — your votes for Democrats have ensured that you are the first generation in American history that will fail to exceed what their parents attained." This doesn't sound good to us — but since we know that we're special snowflakes who can do anything we set our minds to — we believe that we can change it.
Last week, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie won reelection with the support of 49% of millennials (a margin 13 points higher than in his 2009 election). Even Ken Cucinelli, who lost the Virginia gubernatorial race, won the millennial vote over his opponent by a margin of 6 points. In 2008, young voters voted for Obama's promise of providing health insurance to all. In 2013, we've realized that this country just can't afford it. (Oh, and for the record President Obama, we had AIM screen names in the sixth grade. Blinged-out MySpace pages in seventh. So when you can't build a website, you look supremely clueless in our eyes.)
There are more people on welfare than there are working full-time. If you're fortunate enough to have a job in this economy, you're supporting not only yourself but also 1.07 people in the welfare system. Big government is treading on you.
Millennials are not the Tea Party. We're the After Party. We are less formal (no tricorn hats for us, thanks), louder, more diverse, with an anything-goes-attitude... so long as you don't tread on us.