Like Our Parents

Like Our
Parents

Students and their parents have rock as their first musical choice.
Leonardo da Vinci and Picasso are two names that unite parents and kids in the arts and
Albert Einstein is the scientist they admire the most, followed by Sigmund Freud.
By Francesco Neves

Brazilian parents and their teenager children are much more alike than you would
assume. They wear the same clothes, cut their hair the same way, have the same fundamental
beliefs, use the same slang and even enjoy the same music. Caetano Veloso in his fifties
is the teen music idol he was for their parents. Some other musicians like Rita Lee and
Gilberto Gil also draw the youth as they did 30 years ago. Director Alfred Hitchcock is
another common favorite.

To believe new polls conducted among others by MTV, the conflict of generations has
ended in Brazil and the gap between kids and their progenitors has disappeared. A study
conducted by MTV Brazil with 2,425 youngsters revealed that children are staying longer
with their parents, in many cases leaving only when they marry. A mere 18 percent of these
youths say they are eager to leave the parental roof.

They have plenty of reasons to stay and no generational conflict is strong enough to
dim the appeal of free housing, food and washed clothes. Besides, a large percentage of
these boys and girls are allowed or even encouraged by parents to use their rooms to bring
their sweethearts to spend the night and enjoy sex as they please. How is their
relationship with their parents? Excellent and good, answered 90 percent of the wealthier
kids.

Violence is the number one worry for these youngsters. The paternal house works as a
shelter. Sixty four percent of them believe that walking in the streets is an open
invitation to be assaulted and 74 percent don’t trust the police and are even afraid of
them. The today’s youth wants distance from politics and are more conservative than their
parents in areas like drugs, religion and marriage. A mere 15 percent are in favor of
legalizing marijuana, while 69 percent believe in God and 70 percent want to get married.

Another study, this one by Rio’s Centro Educacional da Lagoa, among 15 to 19 year-old
students and their parents, revealed that both generations have rock as their first
musical choice, that Machado de Assis’s Dom Casmurro and Antoine de Saint
Exupéry’s The Little Prince are among their favorite books, and that Leonardo da
Vinci and Picasso are two names that unite parents and kids in the arts. Albert Einstein
is the scientist they admire the most, followed by Sigmund Freud. In politics Kennedy is
the common choice, even though nobody got more votes among the younger crowd than "no
politician".

Among the differences between kids and parents is the fact that children are working
much less than their father and mother did. While 34.2 percent of the parents worked when
they were their kids’ age, only 5.9 of the students are working today.

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