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The writers of "Father Knows Best" and "I Love Lucy" felt they had a responsiblity for the message their work delivered.
When I review the television shows from the sixties, I can see strong, parental role models in nearly every one.
"Father Knows Best," "Leave it to Beaver," "Bonanza," and a dozen others.
Name me one sitcom on television today with a strong, positive, male role model. Don't tell me, "It's only television." We both know better than that. The Music There is an old fable about two rulers of a country splitting up the roles of leadership.
We could look up to The Greatest; he taught blacks and whites alike that anybody can be somebody special. One said, "Let me make all the laws; I'll tell the people how they must behave." The other one said, "Let me dictate their music; and I'll control their minds." There's a lot of truth to that. "Does your chewing gum lose its flavor on the bedpost overnight" comes to mind. Our idols sang about love and tenderness, hope and happiness. (Check the Music Room for the rest of the lyrics.) And it was all harmless, until the Beatles began singing songs with lyrics like "Happiness is a warm gun." And then Paul Simon wrote "Me and Julio down by the school yard." Friends, I have no earthly idea what that was all about.
Our Boomer-In-Charge here at BBHQ, Hershel Chicowitz, writes frequently about current events... He is sometimes funny, sometimes provocative, sometimes a little of each. Probably because there were so many of us, I guess.
It began as a simple comparison between the boomer generation and whatever followed it – now known as Gen-X. (Well, perhaps the times had names; but no group of people has been as closely attached to an identifier as have the boomers.) Why then, did somebody hang a name on the boomers?I guess it has to do with our propensity these days to name every phenomenon in our society, significant or otherwise. In 1998 "Education Week" defined Generation X'ers as those between the ages of 19 and 30, inclusive. Using that definition, there are about 41 million of them in the U. Recently an X'er took me to task for not defining them... So I'll use "Education Week's" definition as those born between 19. As to what they believe in, or what makes them unique... Some of the rest of this essay compares boomers to not only Gen-X, but also to today's teenagers. The Boomers' Passion In the sixties, 40-50 million boomers were passionate about the music we embraced as ours.After Watergate in the seventies, there was Iran-gate, and then Contra-gate. That should give those of you who don't "get it" a clue as to what my primary point is. The same group of musical artists carried us through the sixties, into the seventies, and right on to the present. But as a hint to what I am getting at here, my point goes beyond Gen-X.) I am not sure this should be left up to me. To add some depth to the definition, I'll try to compare the boomers to the X'ers and today's kids. (My comparisons often go beyond Gen-X and into today's youth.And he sings, "I got my lunchbox and I'm armed real well... But just how would you describe The Notorious BIG... More than one young visitor says he is "so yesterday." Let me then point to Eminem, in 2003, the nation's top selling rapper. Diddy and others by other rappers on the song: I'm the definition of, half man, half drugs Ask the clubs, Bad Boy - that's whassup." ... I do not see any that wished the president were dead; not even LBJ, who was sending our generation to the rice fields of Vietnam. I'm not being critical of the Xers; if you think that's my point, you're way off base.Certainly he must be "so today." In a social protest song ("We as Americans"), he rants: I don't rap for dead presidents. It's never been said, but I set precedents and the standards and they can't stand it... We still here, you rockin wit the best Don't worry if I write rhymes, I write checks (ahh! Hand 'em a jock, hold 'em a glock (hahaha) Money to get (yeah), cars to flip (uhh) Bars to sit at and sip Cognac wit Jews that drink (c'mon). What I am saying is that there does not appear to be a whole lot of "social glue" that keeps them and the teens of today together. Most of the X-ers who wrote see it as a slam on their generation... To see why the 60s was so special to the boomers, see our Sixties Section and the essays that accompany it. For more population statistics on boomers and Gen-Xers, check our Boomer Stats page.And in the Clinton administration we had Travel-gate, Trooper-Gate, File-gate, and Zipper-Gate and Forni-gate. The Social Environment; or, "Time Won't Let Me" One of the first things that strikes me about post-World War II children is the general affluence and amount of free time they have had. Today, kids are out of school by 1 or 2 in the afternoon; there's nobody home, and they claim they have nothing to do. We were passionate about a war we did not understand, that we apparently could not win, and in which we were being ordered to die.Up to the early twentieth century, most kids had to work the farm with their parents. Today they say that most adolescent crime occurs between 3 and 7 p.m. We were passionately intolerant of an immoral government that lied to and misled us. Today, many of us are more passionate about getting the biggest SUV we can get our hands on, and looked the other way when our first boomer president lied to us. As I recall, it started in the mid-seventies with rocker Alice Cooper allegedly biting the head of a chicken off during his concerts.