In a December episode of “The View, “Whoopi Goldberg sparked controversy with her remarks aimed at Gen Z and millennials, attributing their struggles in achieving homeownership to a lack of work ethic, suggesting they prefer to work only four hours per day. This stance quickly ignited a debate, especially considering the significant challenges these generations face, including inflation, student debt and a turbulent housing market.

Goldberg, an Oscar-winning actress with a reported net worth of approximately $60 million, argued that the path to success involves more dedication than what she perceives younger generations are willing to commit. “We busted our behinds. We had to,” she said. “Every generation comes and wants to do better than their parents did. Every generation. But I’m sorry, if you only want to work four hours, it’s going to be harder for you to get a house.” The audience applauded Goldberg’s comment. She continued, “You know, I feel for everybody that feels this but I’m sorry, we busted our behinds. We had to bust our behinds because we didn’t have the option of going back.”

Goldberg’s comments did not go unchallenged, as she faced criticism for being out of touch with the realities of modern work and economic environments. In contrast to her views, data and research paint a grim picture for younger generations attempting to navigate today’s economic landscape. For instance, a CNBC and Generation Lab poll revealed that over half of 18- to 34-year-olds believe it is harder to buy a home or advance in their careers now compared to past generations. Evidence supports the contention that Gen Z and millennials are at a disadvantage, with home affordability plummeting and salaries not keeping pace with the cost of living. Clever Real Estate’s analysis, based on Census data, found that home prices have surged by 118% since 1965 when adjusted for inflation, while incomes have only increased by 15%.

According to, about 93% of working Americans report having some form of side gig, with millennials (50%-61%) and Gen Z (53%-59%) leading the pack in engaging with side hustles. This trend is not merely a choice but a reflection of the economic pressures faced by these generations. Deloitte’s 2023 Gen Z and Millennial Survey reveals that the high cost of living and economic uncertainty are causing younger generations to postpone major life decisions, such as buying a house or starting a family, pushing many toward side jobs to make ends meet.



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