Sunday, March 11, 2012

Why go?

This article kind of pisses me off.

It's astonishingly backward: first of all the attitude - that moving is in itself a positive good, and that people should pick up and move "just because" is positive, and staying near one's family and friends is negative... is so amazingly bizarre, I have trouble even parsing it.

Really? building a community and remaining in it is bad? Helping to rebuild rather than abandoning everyone else is a sign of laziness? really?

 Second, the assertion here is that people are staying put because they're somehow lazy, rather than that staying someplace where you have a support network in hard times is a smart strategy.

That's pretty bass-ackwards. Remember all that worry we had a decade ago about how people were too busy rushing off and no one was making ties to their communities?

Also, the cultural assumptions are not well-examined. Could some of the stick-it-outness have something to do with our newer immigrant cultures? Families that stick together to help themselves move up the economic ladder together?

IMO, if this is true (and let's really see if it is), it could well be something to celebrate - people building stronger communities, stronger relationships with their parents, closer ties with their friends. I'm getting kind of sick of hearing how this generation is lazy, blah, blah, blah.

Maybe those who had the good fortune to have been born in a time when getting a job was easy and family ties were less valued could think to themselves for a while that maybe, just maybe, the way they did things didn't work out so well for everyone, and perhaps it's time to do things a different way.

 For example, a family who stays close to their sibs and parents, not to mention friends, well, maybe raising a family in that environment will be less difficult for women, with more people to share the child-care. Hmm, never thought of that? Since men still aren't exactly doing half.

Or maybe, staying put rather than moving is because there might be two people, both of whose careers need to be considered, rather than just one, and everyone follows him whenever he feels like picking up and moving. Oh, yeah, that.

It seems to me that  this article is just a way of expressing certain prejudices of a certain slice of the community - and  doesn't really tell us anything about either the reasons that people are staying put (if they really are). There's lots of economic things to report on out there, can't you NYT writer types find something to do with yourselves?

MIssed me?

I'm back again!