Adultism, or “Don’t Trust Anyone UNDER 30”

A million years ago there was a slogan that incanted youth to, “Don’t trust anyone over 30.” Well, a lot of people have been able to dismiss that call, especially as they’ve gotten older and their “anti-establishment” heroes have fallen. But this post isn’t about that phenomenon.

Instead, today I’m writing about the reality that a lot of the people who ascribed to the ideal of assigning trust according to age are in power today. They’ve got the positions that lead our society as government officials, business titans, community agency heads, and thought leaders. Some of them are overt about their discrimination against youth; some are coy. But the most apparent lesson I’ve discovered is the gross abuse of these individuals who are biased in the worst kind of ways: Ironically, these faux-revolutionaries who chanted against older people are now leading the battering ram against youth. Now it seems like they’re yelling, “Don’t Trust Anyone UNDER 30!” Someone even wrote a book by that title.

So the age discrimination battle is alive and well. We need to take a much more assertive posture in order to teach adults and young people about age discrimination, adultism, and adultocracy, as well as the fear of children and the fear of youth. We need workshop outlines, a simple and accessible guide, and a website that will successfully drive people to the growing pile of information available about age discrimination. Next steps…

Written by Adam Fletcher, this article was originally posted to Learn more at!

Published by Adam F.C. Fletcher

I'm a speaker and writer who researches, writes and shares about youth, education, and history. Learn more about me at

2 thoughts on “Adultism, or “Don’t Trust Anyone UNDER 30”

  1. A friend asked recently if there are any politicians who make it their business to empower young people, or who are cognizant of adultism and its effects. Do you know of any?


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