Monday, September 27, 2010

The Worst Generation

They lived through the worst depression this country has ever known and still managed to survive. When the world called upon them to defend freedom they gladly volunteered themselves and took up arms. The men lined up around the corner at places to get a chance to serve their country as soon as they heard they were needed. The women went to work, many for the first time ever, and made the millions of tanks, planes, and bombs that would be needed to bring peace to the world. They those men returned home they were greeted with parades and treated like heroes. They truly were the Greatest Generation. Then they had kids. Dear God… What happened?

You have to love Rosie!
The Baby Boomers were born into a country of prosperity and peace. Television consisted of Leave it to Beaver and I Love Lucy. They grew up going to sock hops, drag raced their cars and drank chocolate malts with two straws as they starred dreamily into their best girl’s eyes. Then they became adults and all hell broke loose.

"Ward, don't you think you were a little hard on the Beav?"
Their country called for their assistance to fight for freedom and democracy so in response they protested, burned their draft cards and flocked to Canada like Canadian Geese flying north for the winter. Women burned their bras and stopped shaving because apparently being saggy and hairy made people take you more seriously. Huge groups gathered to get high and protest that their country went to “kill babies and burn down huts” in a jungle as their own soldiers were dying trying to defend freedom in a far off land. When these soldiers came home were greeted with a lonely airport terminal and the yells of, “Baby killer!”

Here is the Baby Boomer's version of Rosie the Riveter.
The Greatest Generation had a strong sense of right and wrong. They knew that Germany, Japan and Italy were wrong when they waged war on other nations in their desire to build their empires. Their morals led them to take up arms and defend those who could not defend themselves.

Remember when we believed in something so much we would die for it?
As the Baby Boomers gradually took charge of our nation they would preach that anything goes and that everything is acceptable. There is no right and wrong. There are no absolute morals. If you believe that it is your right to invade a country who are we to say that you are wrong. How can a government ask someone who has no absolute morals and despises their government to go off and defend freedom? It isn’t going to happen.

It's depressing that this is the only absolute that people accept today.
The Boomers remind me of a group of teenagers. As we all know teens want nothing more than to do and say the exact opposite of their parents. If their parents have morals the teen doesn’t like them. If the parents think it is important go off and defend freedom the teen will protest such an idea. The biggest problem here is that teens eventually grow up… what happened to the Boomers?

Now we all know you cannot group an entire generation into one group and not everyone born during these years did and believed these things, but unfortunately for those who did not follow the rest of the lemmings off the cliff they often get lumped in with the rest and lost in history. Many of the wisest and most patriotic people I know are from this generation and they are not happy with what the most vocal of their cohort did. It must be depressing for them to be lumped into this crowd.

It would be funnier if it wasn't so true.
What I find particularly saddening is that in one generation we went from the United States “Saviors of the World” to the United States “Land of Mediocrity.” How many generations will it take to fix what just one generation broke?

1 comment: