A collection of recent studies have suggested that kids have (kind of) stopped being useless assholes. The statistics, compared with statistics from the 1970s and '80s, show significant drops in drug use, alcohol consumption, and reckless, filthy teen sex.
In 1980, studies showed that 60% percent of high-school seniors tried marijuana and 9% smoked it daily. Today, 45% of seniors have tried the sticky-icky and 6% smoke daily, which is surprising given America's newly lax (ish) stance on the drug. As if that isn't exciting enough, it looks like reality TV may actually have helped, and is not as worthless as previously thought, at least in a "scared straight" sort of way. The media's coverage of the dark side has proven to be a surprisingly useful cautionary tale to today's youth — so there's really no reason to feel guilty about watching Gossip Girl, unless you masturbate to it, like I — like my buddy does.
Back in the '70s and '80s, kids would be so wrapped up in getting just the tip in (just for a minute, just to see how it feels) that they wouldn't stop to think about babies, genital warts, or herpes. Now, with glorious television like 16 & Pregnant, Teen Mom, and Teen Mom 2 showing our most impressionable citizens how quickly life can turn to shit when you get doped up and bang your girl without a jimmy-hat, teens are keeping their grubby little fingers to themselves. In 1988, 50% of boys ages fifteen to seventeen had experienced sex, compared to today's 28% for the same age group. You hear that MTV? Your programming is making the world safer. Holy actual crap.
While the precise reason for the drop in immoral behavior is still unknown, experts attribute it to the rise of the drinking age, the prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases, and the public knowledge that doctors don't really recommend cigarettes — unless they're cool doctors, because everyone knows cigarettes rock.