Three Commonly Held Values of Gen Z "Plurals"
Describing Gen Z as Plurals because of their pluralistic characteristics seemed as obvious as calling the previous generation Millennials. At least the marketers thought so when they selected Magid Generational Strategies (Marketing Corp) the winner at the Naming the Next Generation Conference in New York City.
Let’s examine three commonly held values of Gen Z Plurals…
Values-orientated but not traditional – Gen Z is perhaps as equally values-oriented as other generations but has little attachment to tradition. While 90% of Gen Z strongly agree that marriage and family play a vital role in society, 80% think same-sex marriage should be legal. For Gen Z, family should be a place of safety, commitment, nurturing and fun – regardless of its composition.
Diversification replacing defined lines of demarcation – Sexual orientation and the definition of family is diversified for Gen Zers. So are defined lines of black, white and even gray areas of the life of students and leaders.
They are spiritual but not necessarily Christian or religious. When it does come to religion then they tend to be Syncretistic as illustrated by Ezra 4. They are comfortable with uniting opposing principles or ideas.
Tolerance is redefined as validation – Where relativism reigns, absolute tolerance is the only rational response. Tolerance by definition has morphed, beginning with acknowledgement, moving to acceptance and landing finally to where we are today: demanding approval.
Not all Gen Z students hold to these three or any other set of values. However, the generation was named because of pluralistic tendencies that manifested themselves and were observed in studies.
It is imperative that we communicate absolute truth to them laying a foundation for life, belief and philosophy. It is also vital that we teach them how to think and to be able to give a defense of their faith.