"You want to get shot fighting Germans? Son, back in my day we got black lung,
and that was good enough for us."
Mental Floss assembled an article of quotes criticizing kids from 1933 back to 20 goddamn B.C. My favorite is an 1869 Scientific American article about how this hot new fad called "chess" is an idiotic waste of time because it doesn't make you smarter or healthier, a criticism that's since been applied to everything from rock music to Pogs. Tell the writer of the Millennial Pledge or one of his comrades in crotchetiness that you're quitting video games for chess and you'd be labeled a role model for your generation. Hell, even the most damning criticism of millennials is written in an informal manner that grumps from centuries past would find appalling. Contractions and slang? What's next, interracial marriage?
Every single generation has this debate, and every single time it all works out in the end. Young people responsibly take charge of the world, grow old, completely forget how much they hated being criticized, and tell their kids to get their shit together. We're treating this like a huge new cultural conflict, but 30 years from now someone my age is going to be writing nonsensical dictates to the Bieber generation, and the cycle will continue until the Earth is hurtled into the sun.
At which point someone will complain that when they were kids they never got hurtled into the sun.