An Open Letter To My Generation

To my Generation,

Our generation is the generation that people complain about. We are the smart phone addicts, the tablet fiends, the Instagram stalking, Facebook friending, Twitter following brats. For this, we get a lot of stick. We get told we live life in tunnel vision, that we are disengaged with the world around us, that we form relationships through a computer screen, that our minds are being pumped full of useless information about piano playing cats and reality TV.

For a long time I defended our generation. I would vehemently deny accusations of binge watching and brainwashing. I was up in arms when anyone mentioned that we are a generation of watchers. That we judge the world through a screen and we don’t act until it is too late. Yet I find my self agreeing that, at times, our generation is unkind. We look resignedly up from our phone screens to criticise another celebrity’s child, a singer’s new album… a friend’s religion

Let me get one thing clear. My religion is none of your business. Who or what I choose to put my faith in is between me and that higher power. Yet I am scorned, sometimes by those I consider closest, for believing in something bigger than me; I am written off as just another bible basher trying to mercilessly shove religious nonsense down your throat; I am told not to be so illogical, ‘don’t I know that science proves my faith wrong’?!

That is not what I stand for.

I am not here to force my beliefs on you, but I have something to say and I need to speak out. My religion, like so many others, is about forgiveness, kindness, and strength. Those who have a belief system, whatever it is, are not all self-righteous or pompous. The actions of the few that do terrible things do not represent the other 84% of the world’s population that do have a faith. This statement does not apply just to Christianity. It applies to all faiths. Yes, including those who believe in Islam. Let me reiterate: The actions of a few do not represent the beliefs of the majority. 

We have an obligation- to ourselves and to each other. I am not writing this to convert you to believe in something that you do not wish to. I don’t believe that the God that I put my faith in would wish to force anyone to believe if they did not want to. I don’t believe in God the oppressor, but in God the benevolent. And, by the way, my words are conveying only my own beliefs- many other Christians may feel very differently than I do about many things.

But I have to speak up, to the person who laughed at me and anyone else that feels the same way as them. Yes, I do pray to a higher power. Yes, I do attend church, a place in which I can meet new, like-minded people who will enrich my life in multiple ways. Yes, I do believe that my faith plays an enormous role in my life. But I must also stress this: My religion does not make me weak or boring, it does not mean I am deluded, and it most certainly does not mean that I am narrow-minded. My religion makes me who I am, and if you have been my friend for this long then maybe you shouldn’t have such a problem with that.

With sincere apologies for the rant,
Hannah Bounford

P.S: Is it ironic that I felt the only way I could voice this was through my own social media?



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