Chloe Swarbrick, a Green Party member of New Zealand’s parliament was giving a speech a on the Zero Carbon Bill when she was heckled by another National MP. Smoothly and collectedly, she clapped back with “OK Boomer,” and continued her speech seamlessly (seen in the above video).
“OK Boomer” has become something more than just an internet meme. It is both symptomatic of, and a response to the often insurmountable generational gap in debates between millennials or Gen Z’s and the Boomers. Younger generations are often written off as lazy, spoiled, narcissistic, technology-obsessed and perhaps most damaging, “snowflakes.”
In an interview with Stuff, Swarbrick explained “Young people have suffered a decade of jibes about how millennials have ruined everything and need to ‘pull our socks up,’ or something,” adding that “‘OK boomer’ acknowledges that you cannot win a deeply polarized debate — facts don’t matter.”
Ironically enough, those who come under the label of Boomers have been incredibly sensitive to the term “OK Boomer,” with one conservative radio host calling it an equivalent of the N-word.
Swarbrick herself has also responded to the Boomers’ anger at the term, “Today I have learnt that responding succinctly and in perfect jest to somebody heckling you about *your age* as you speak about the impact of climate change on *your generation* with the literal title of their generation makes some people very mad,” she said in a Facebook post.
Below is some of the recent OK Boomer discourse, and social media’s responses to Swarbrick’s piercing delivery of the same. Now included in the meme, is also mainstream media’s coverage of it: