n.—Gloss: a generation of young people who are idealistic and active in pursuing a better world, but who do not participate in the related political or social discourse that helps form popular opinion or influence elections. Note: The “Q” comes from “quiet.” Coined by New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman in what appears to be a typical columnist’s ploy of launching a new term to see if it will stick and thereby measuring one’s influence. «The Iraq war may be a mess, but I noticed at Auburn and Old Miss more than a few young men and women proudly wearing their R.O.T.C. uniforms. Many of those not going abroad have channeled their national service impulses into increasingly popular programs at home like “Teach for America,” which has become to this generation what the Peace Corps was to mine. It’s for all these reasons that I’ve been calling them “Generation Q”—the Quiet Americans, in the best sense of that term, quietly pursuing their idealism, at home and abroad. But Generation Q may be too quiet, too online, for its own good, and for the country’s own good.» —“Generation Q” by Thomas L. Friedman New York Times Oct. 10, 2007. (source: Double-Tongued Dictionary)
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