Millennials And The Next America

Millennials make their own way. Less trusting. More politically independent. We’ll look at a big study of millennials, and the American future.

A new Pew Research Center study shows the Millennial generation (young adults younger than 33 and older than 18) are less trusting, more political independent and more diverse than previous American generation. (Creative Commons)

A new Pew Research Center study shows the Millennial generation (young adults younger than 33 and older than 18) are less trusting, more political independent and more diverse than previous American generation. (Creative Commons)

You could call it the “next America.”  Not the America of the “Greatest Generation” or the Baby Boomers.  But the America of the millennials.  Americans 18 to 33 who are moving up, moving in, eventually taking over.  A big new survey points to how they look different and think differently.  Much more diverse racially, ethnically.  Much less attached to institutions: political parties, religion and – so far – marriage.  Less trusting than their parents, but more linked up online.  Loaded with debt, but optimistic about the future.  This hour On Point:  exploring the next America.

– Tom Ashbrook


Paul Taylor, executive vice president of the Pew Research Center. Author of “The Next America: Boomers, Millennials and the Looming Generational Showdown.” (@paultaylordc)

Kat Chowreporting covering race, culture and ethnicity for NPR’s Code Switch team. (@katchow)

Evan Rytlewski, music editor at Milwaukee’s Shepherd Express. (@Evanryt)

From Tom’s Reading List

Pew Research Center: Millennials in Adulthood — “The Millennial generation is forging a distinctive path into adulthood. Now ranging in age from 18 to 331, they are relatively unattached to organized politics and religion, linked by social media, burdened by debt, distrustful of people, in no rush to marry— and optimistic about the future.”

NPR: Millennials To Bear The Burden Of Boomer’s Social Safety Net — “The next America this book captures is a place where millennials, the younger generation, are growing in numbers and influence. Among other things, they are reshaping this country’s political landscape. The book, packed with charts and numbers, raises questions about federal programs that seem to treat millennials unfairly.”

American Public Transportation Association: Record 10.7 Billion Trips Taken On U.S. Public Transportation In 2013 — “In 2013 Americans took 10.7 billion trips on public transportation, which is the highest annual public transit ridership number in 57 years, according to a report released by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA). This was the eighth year in a row that more than 10 billion trips were taken on public transportation systems nationwide.  While vehicle miles traveled on roads (VMT) went up 0.3 percent, public transportation use in 2013 increased by 1.1 percent. “

Read An Excerpt From “The Next America” By Paul Taylor

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Oct 9, 2015
A manhole begins to spill over with floodwaters as high tide approaches at Dorchester Road at Sawmill Branch Canal in Summerville, S.C., Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015.  (AP)

Russia goes big in Syria. The US hits a hospital in Kunduz. Hillary flips on the TPP. An epic flood in South Carolina. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Oct 9, 2015
In this Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2015, photo, Devlin D'Zmura, a tending news manager at DraftKings, a daily fantasy sports company, works on his laptop at the company's offices in Boston. (AP)

Fantasy football scandal, and the wild, booming betting world of fantasy sports.

Oct 8, 2015
US singer Patti Smith performs during the Way Out West music festival in Gothenburg, Sweden, Saturday, Aug.15, 2015.  (AP)

Iconic rocker, poet of punk, and National Book Award-winning author Patti Smith joins us to talk about her new memoir, “M Train”.

Oct 8, 2015
In this Aug. 2, 2012 file photo, local newspapers show stories about the controversial strategy to bail the government out of a financial hole, at a restaurant along Seven Mile Beach on the outskirts of George Town on the Cayman Islands. The Cayman Islands have lost some of their allure by abruptly proposing what amounts to an income tax on expatriate workers who have helped build the territory into one of the most famous or, for some people, notorious offshore banking centers that have tax advantages for foreign investment operations. (AP)

Trillions of dollars are now stashed in protected tax havens around the world, leaving societies’ bills to those at home. We’ll dig in.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Meet The Interns, Fall 2015
Friday, Oct 9, 2015

Meet our Fall 2015 interns! (Better late than never, right?)

More »
1 Comment
Our Week In The Web: October 9, 2015
Friday, Oct 9, 2015


More »
Rep. Daniel Webster: ‘I’m Gonna Sell This Message’
Tuesday, Oct 6, 2015

When House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) announced his retirement and resignation from his position last month, it surprised both his Party and the Washington political establishment.

More »