Should race still matter to Generation Y?
By DAVID TARRANT / The Dallas Morning News
To the coming-of- age-generation known as the Millennials, the world has never seemed more diverse.
DAVE PLUNKERT / Special to the DMN Popular television shows such as The Real World and Grey's Anatomy show diverse casts mixing and mingling on-screen. Teens are exposed to the hottest R&B and hip-hop artists on VH1 and MTV. And in this Internet age, access to other cultures, trends and styles is only a few clicks away.
Pop culture serves up a "multiracial, multicultural nirvana," says Charles Gallagher, a Georgia State sociology professor, contributing to an impression of the younger generation as the first "post-race" generation – one where race doesn't matter.
"I don't know very many people who flat out have a problem with other races," says Andrew Moua, 17, a senior at Duncanville High School and a member of The Dallas Morning News Teen Advisory Board. "Everyone I know listens to some kind of hip-hop."
Generation Y's perception of diverse cultures and racial issues has been shaped by pop culture and mass media. But what they see on TV isn't necessarily reality, and that disconnect can lead to everything from personal misunderstandings to cultural collisions in classrooms or dorms.
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