What are the ten most significant historic events in your lifetime? The answer it seems will most likely be defined by your generation and your race. When Pew Research Center asked Americans the above question, researchers discovered that answers from members of the same generation were quite similar while there were numerous differences among the various generations.
Results of the research can be found in an article titled “Americans Name the 10 Most Significant Historic Events of Their Lifetimes”and written by Claudia Deane, Maeve Duggan and Rich Morin.
For research purposes Pew Research Center defined the generations as follows: (1) Members of the Millennial generation were born from 1981 to 1998 and were 18-35 in 2016; (2) Members of the Generation X were born from 1965 to 1980 and were 36 to 51 in 2016; (3) Members of the Baby Boom generation were born from 1946 to 1964 and were 52 to 70 in 2016; (4) Members of the Silent Generation were born from 1928 to 1945 and were 71 to 88 in 2016; (5) Members of the Greatest Generation were born from 1901 to 1927 and were 89 to 115 in 2016.
September 11, 2001, was named by 76% of respondents in all generations. This was followed by the election of Barack Obama by 40% of respondents. Other events that made the Top Eleven listing are: (3) the tech revolution at 22%, (4) JFK assassination at 21%, (5) Vietnam War at 20%, (6) Afghanistan/Iraq wars at 17%, (7) Moon landing at 17%,
(8) fall of the Berlin Wall/end of the Cold War at 13%, (9) gay marriage at 11%, (10) Orlando shooting at 10%, and
(11) Gulf War at 10%.
“The perceived historic importance of the attacks on New York and the Pentagon, span virtually every traditional demographic divide. Majorities of men and women, Millennials and Baby Boomers, Americans with college degrees and those without a high school diploma rate 9/11 as one of the 10 most historically significant events to occur during their lifetime. And while they seem to agree on little else this election year, the survey finds that more than seven-in-ten Republicans and Democrats name the attacks as one of their top 10 historic events.
“The one exception to this pattern is the views of blacks and whites. While the Sept. 11 attacks easily top the list for whites, it shares the top spot with the election of President Barack Obama among blacks. Similarly, the civil rights movement ranks behind only the election of Obama and 9/11 on the list of most significant events for blacks but is absent from the top 10 lifetime events for whites.
“Just as striking as the public’s consensus on the impact of 9/11 is the steep drop-off in the proportion of Americans who name other notable events. The election of Obama is the second-most frequently named event, listed by 40% of the public. Every other event is named by fewer than one-quarter of all adults. This includes the changes ushered in by the internet, personal computers, smartphones and other innovations of the tech revolution, the assassination of John F. Kennedy, and the Vietnam War."
So, I am asking you to list “the 10 historic events that occurred during [your lifetime] that [you think] `have had the greatest impact on the country.’” After you make your list, check this site to see if you agree with your generation. You can find lots of other interesting facts on the site also.