There’s a serious problem with The Daily Mail’s latest headline about millennials

The Daily Mail logo altered to read 'Daily Fail'
Sam Woolfe

The Daily Mail has long published articles bashing millennials. A new story from Ross Clark is the latest instalment in the tabloid’s tirade against Generation Y. The paper ran the headline:

Give £10,000 to every 25-year-old? God, I’m fed up with these moaning millennials!

But there’s a serious problem with the Mail‘s millennial-bashing.

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Any excuse to rant about millennials

The story is based on a Resolution Foundation report suggesting that, when anyone in the UK turns 25, they should receive £10,000 – to be used for housing, education, a business, or a pension fund. This is known as a ‘citizen’s inheritance’ and is meant to make up for intergenerational differences in factors like home ownership and pensions. The report underscores:

Younger generations are bearing more risks and holding fewer assets than their predecessors. We need to redress that imbalance if we are to maintain the promise of an asset-owning democracy.

The problem with the Mail’s piece is that it suggests millennials are demanding £10,000 at the taxpayer’s expense. But they’re not. The authors of the report are the ones who made the suggestion.

Clark believes millennials are whingers. He said:

the idea that today’s young people are having a much harder time than their parents or grandparents is bunk.

Do millennials think it’s a good idea?

The report suggests that changes to inheritance tax could free up £10,000 for every 25 year old. Currently, many people who have assets worth up to £1m can have their inheritance taxed at 40%. The think tank says this could be changed to a 20% tax on all assets and inheritances up to £500,000. After that amount, this tax would rise to 30%.

While some millennials believe a £10,000 citizen’s inheritance would change their “ability to afford a house”, others don’t believe it’s such a good idea. Nikeh Gray, 29, told the Guardian:

I would have a big smile on my face. With no restrictions it would be gone in a month, but with the restrictions, how would it help me? £10,000 is not even enough for a deposit

In response to the report, Guardian journalist Gaby Hinsliff said a £10,000 handout probably isn’t a long-term solution. Many people also wrote to the paper pointing out there are much more effective ways to help young people. Some suggestions include cancelling student debt, strengthening worker protection, regulating the housing market, and a more progressive tax and benefits system. One Redditor wryly commented:

Bloody millennials, walking around like they rent the place.

While another said:

Millennials aren’t asking for £10k. They are asking for affordable housing, stable jobs, things like that.

£10k would be a best half a deposit (up here in the NW), on a mortgage they can’t get because no bank (understandably) trusts zero hour contracts.

As The Canary previously reported, many millennials fear they will never be able to own a home or be able to retire. Struggling with insecure work and the heavy burden of student debt is also a common issue for young people.

The Daily Mail‘s millennial bashing

Despite these serious problems, the Daily Mail is intent on bashing millennials. The tabloid is happy to reinforce stereotypes that all millennials are “entitled” and “snowflakes”. It has also jumped on the opportunity to promote the stereotype that young people are spoilt whingers who are demanding money be handed to them on a silver platter. But they aren’t asking for this. Like everyone else, they just want to be able to live a decent life.

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