LETTER : A typical teenager answers back

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The Independent Online
Sir: I was delighted to discover from your article ("The changing face of the British teenager", 9 March) that I am in fact a typical British youth of the Nineties. I'm 17 years old, I own two pairs of Converse trainers, I listen to Blur, Jarvis Cocker is my "icon" and, other than the fact that I have never worn a "puffa jacket", I seem to be in keeping with my peers. That is to say I feel my education is very important, I agree that the age of consent for marriage should be higher, I'm not particularly interested in politics and it is my belief that stricter discipline would reduce the crime rate considerably.

However, I was slightly dismayed to find that we British teenagers were being mocked with such comments as: "we have Generation Zzzz" and "Come back, James Dean". Without wishing to sound like the stereotypical media portrayal of an adolescent, I find this very unfair! Will it ever be possible for teenagers to satisfy their elders?

I accept that the figure of 59 per cent of us having no interest in politics makes us appear apathetic; but for my part the only access I have to the world of politics is to watch MPs, on all sides, making a mockery of the democratic process by showing more interest in scoring points off each other than even attempting to sort out the problems of society. This doesn't exactly inspire me.

Kim Coveney

Reading, Berkshire

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