In my musings I have wondered why my generation of children seemed to have fewer problems or at least didn’t have the same sometimes violent reactions to them. We experienced bullying; not being popular, academic failures, teenage pregnancy, and even limited drug use, but they rarely and even never resulted in suicide, school shootings and overdoses.  What made our “environment” so different that we didn’t take these paths to destruction? I ponder the answer and then reflected on “our environment” vs. today’s environment.

            Our environment was, early in our lives, one household phone for all, one television set shared in a common room and dinner around a dining or kitchen table. Communication was limited and shared with family. Communication with friends was at school and through social groups and sports. It was much more “supervised”. We didn’t call our friends repeatedly, text, Instagram or Facebook. You said what you had to say to someone’s face and were careful about what and how you said it because an immediate fight could result. Even when the fight occurred the issue was resolved then and there. It didn’t linger on U-tube forever.

            Our outside communication sources were the T.V. and the radio. The T.V. had limited channels and programs. Mostly they were for the grownups who bought the products in the ads. We therefore watched comedic sitcoms like I love Lucy and variety shows like Ed Sullivan and the Cid Cesar Show, and family shows like Father knows Best and Leave it to Beaver, and finally the Brady Bunch. The few children shows available in Chicago for children were Kukla, Fran and Ollie with Clarabelle the Clown, cartoons, and westerns like Roy Rogers and Gene Autry and our superhero Superman which the “grownups” also watched. These were our programs and our lessons on life as well as what we learned from our parents. The“violent” westerns viewed in black and white were singing cowboys with friendly companions and beautiful horses. NO, we didn’t have Transformers, The Walking Dead, etc. We only listened to the radio for music which was country, show musicals, and early rock and roll. Motown was our savior with its upbeat tunes and harmonies we could dance happily to.


Just saying . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .







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