Friday, April 11, 2014

Age Of Innocence?

The latest violent school act that erupted in Pennsylvania this past week got me to thinking , and that is not an easy thing to do, about "my era" of growing up Wallace. Some look at the era and say that it was a different time, the world was different, and we don't understand the pressure the kids are under today. I beg to differ on all of those points. The worlds was actually more dangerous,just as corrupt, we had Mr. Nixon and Mr. Agnew, and certainly just as complicated as it is today.

1. We had the real Cold War, and lived under the constant threat of war with the Evil Empire, the Soviet Union. We lived through the Cuban Missile Crises, when one blink could have caused the annihilation of the world.
2. We had numerous economic crises, stock market crashes, and gloom and doom preached from the pulpits of America.
3.We had race riots like the current generation cannot fathom
4. We had three  assassinations on the 60's alone. Kennedy/Kennedy/ King/
5. We had the dreaded military draft and the enormous catastrophe known was the Vietnam War. You either went to college and did well, or you got drafted with an almost certain all expense paid trip to the jungles of Asia.

6. And yes, we had bullying ,too, only we didn't shoot anyone or stab anyone who bullied us. Nope, a good fist to the nose or chin took care of that problem

So, I would not call growing up in " my era" an innocent time. It was quite the opposite. We also had the hippies and the sexual revolution.

Remember Barry McGuire and " Eve of Destruction"?

The eastern world, it is exploding
Violence flarin', bullets loadin'
You're old enough to kill, but not for votin'
You don't believe in war, but what's that gun you're totin'
And even the Jordan River has bodies floatin'

But you tell me
Over and over and over again, my friend
Ah, you don't believe
We're on the eve
of destruction.

Don't you understand what I'm tryin' to say
Can't you feel the fears I'm feelin' today?
If the button is pushed, there's no runnin' away
There'll be no one to save, with the world in a grave
[Take a look around ya boy, it's bound to scare ya boy]

And you tell me
Over and over and over again, my friend
Ah, you don't believe
We're on the eve
of destruction.

Yeah, my blood's so mad feels like coagulatin'
I'm sitting here just contemplatin'
I can't twist the truth, it knows no regulation.
Handful of senators don't pass legislation
And marches alone can't bring integration
When human respect is disintegratin'
This whole crazy world is just too frustratin'

And you tell me
Over and over and over again, my friend
Ah, you don't believe
We're on the eve
of destruction.

Think of all the hate there is in Red China
Then take a look around to Selma, Alabama
You may leave here for 4 days in space
But when you return, it's the same old place
The poundin' of the drums, the pride and disgrace
You can bury your dead, but don't leave a trace
Hate your next-door neighbor, but don't forget to say grace
And, tell me over and over and over and over again, my friend
You don't believe
We're on the eve
Of destruction
Mm, no no, you don't believe
We're on the eve
of destruction.

So, why did we not have the violence in schools that we have now? We still had morals and structure, and discipline, key ingredients that are sorely lacking today. I loved growing up Wallace in my era, the dark ages.

2 comments:

Go Figure said...

Cedar: You hit it on the head--morals and structure, and discipline. I would only add Ben Haskell's paddle with holes in it. And...by the way, I do not recall the incident you mention in a post some time ago. Hopefully you considered it an unofficial entrance in the 'club'. I did when Dionne administered mine! Ha! I ran into him a year or so ago...he was a witness for the Galena Mine in a work comp case arising in 2006. It was interesting. As to be expected he was an honest witness. In fact, as it turned out, he wasn't even on, and didn't work on, the mine level where the accident happened. Ha! Alan Hull was the defense attorney. Justice prevailed although it took a long time. I told him how impressed I had been by his etched plate of the 'mountains'. He looked at me and said, "Do you remember that!" Ha!

Cedar Street Kid said...

I considered it a membership into the club. Everyone, sooner or later received the paddle in Haskell's class. I don't remember why you were the one chosen to be the paddler, but I laugh when I think about it. It was my one and only paddling in school except for Mrs.' Brislan hitting all of us on our hands with a ruler Just think, Mr. Haskell would be sent to prison now days for paddling like he did!