The Kids Today Are Very Nice People

Margot Sanger-Katz and Aaron Carroll write about the kids these days:

You wouldn’t know it from “Euphoria,” but today’s teenagers drink less than their parents’ generation did. They smoke less, and they use fewer hard drugs. They get in fewer car accidents and fewer physical fights. They are less likely to drop out of high school, less likely to have sex, and less likely to become pregnant. They commit fewer crimes. They even wear bike helmets.

Across a wide range of classically risky teenage behaviors, today’s teenagers are getting tamer and more responsible, making better decisions and eschewing the dangerous choices that, for many adults today, defined youth.

That’s true! For example:

Among teenagers, arrest rates have plummeted by 50-70 percent since the “superpredator” era of the early 90s. Generally speaking, teenagers today are nicer, politer, and less likely to get in trouble than at nearly any time in the postwar era. It’s amazing what happens when you halt the practice of poisoning kids with lead fumes and turning them into monsters, isn’t it?

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We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

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