'OK BOOMER': Millennials cheer New Zealand lawmaker's remark

Cartoon of generations

Cartoon of generations

'Teenagers just respond, "Ok, boomer".

And now, in addition to going viral, the phrase has cemented itself into the annals of history: On Tuesday (November 5), New Zealand Parliament member Chlöe Swarbrick used "OK, boomer" to shut down a heckler who scoffed at her as she gave a speech about the climate crisis.

Writing on Facebook after her comment went viral, Ms Swarbrick wrote: 'Today I have learnt that responding succinctly and in flawless jest to somebody heckling you about *your ageyour generation* with the literal title of their generation makes some people very mad.

"OK, boomer" has become a biting slogan younger generations have used on platforms like TikTok to express resentment toward older people, invoking the name of the baby boom generation.

As someone born on the cusp between millennials and generation Z, I love the "OK, boomer" discourse.

In a text-message conversation with New Zealand's Stuff, Swarbick explained the phrase is a "simple summarisation of collective exhaustion". Swarbrick went on to acknowledge that "you can not win a deeply polarised debate - facts don't matter".

The parliament's social media team apologized for the error and said the captions were updated.

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Swarbrick's on-trend retort has the internet hailing her as a "queen" - but others aren't so charmed by the term.

However, some people - namely baby boomers - have apparently taken offense to the phrase. Conservative radio talk show host Bob Lonsberry stirred up a fierce debate this week by tweeting that "boomer" is "the N-word of ageism". Lonsberry comments drew sharp criticism for equating a youth insult to racism.

In a Facebook post later, Swarbrick acknowledged having upset some people.

"Today I have learnt that responding succinctly and in ideal jest to somebody heckling you about *your ageyour generation* with the literal title of their generation makes some people very mad", she wrote on Facebook about the people born between 1946 and 1964 who seem to spend plenty of time complaining about how sensitive young people are, but conveniently forget about how riled up they get about criticism themselves.

Young people have suffered a decade of jibes about how millennials have ruined everything and need to "pull our socks up, or something", she said.

Contributing: Joshua Bote, USA TODAY; Ryan C. Miller, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.

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