Gatlinburg, Tenn. gutted by series of wildfires

A popular tourist town in Tennessee has become the next North American region to be ravaged by wildfires. Gatlinburg, a mountain resort town southeast of Knoxville, has fallen victim to severe fire causing hundreds of thousands of people to evacuate their homes.

As of Dec. 8, 14 people have been confirmed dead as a result of the fires.

For more information on the wildfires, check out my Storify.

Millennials: The anti-social generation?


Photo: WikiMedia

Picture this: You’re on the bus. Maybe you’re coming home from work. Maybe you’re on your way to school. Now, look around. You’re probably looking at a jam-packed bus. There’s probably 40 or 50 people on the bus. Of these 40 to 50 people, about half of them are young adults. Most of those young adults are wearing their headphones and listening to music.

Did you picture it? You probably did because it’s a common sight no matter where you are.

Whether you’re walking through the halls at school, walking through a mall or walking down the street, seeing young people listening to their music and not interacting with other people is a common sight, but why is it that this is more common in the younger generation than with those 40 years old and up?

As a young kid these days, you grow up with your iPods, iPhones and MP3 Players. You’re almost trained to keep to yourself. It’s a millennial thing.

As a 20 something year old, I know this all too well. I grew up in this generation, but I also believe I grew up in the middle of needing to bury my face in a phone to avoid eye contact and the Gen-X way of doing things – having an actual face-to-face conversation.

There’s an easy fix (in theory) to this “anti-social” problem. As young people trying to make it in a working world where we need to gain the respect of our elders, we need to take the headphones out of our ears. We need to take our eyes away from our phone screens and try to hold an actual conversation. It might be scary at first and it might be hard, but we can do it.

And if we can’t? Well, then we also can’t be respected members of society.