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  • Writer's picturePanthergirl

when was america "great"?

Even before "MAGA" there was a "Good Ol' Days" viral email making the rounds (sent of course by luddites who thought that was the primary purpose of email). That email inspired me to write this piece on the old blog, and MAGA inspired me to repost it now. The whole concept is bizarre and deeply flawed, because while the 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s might have been the "good ol' days" for straight white adult men, that's about it. I've broken down that old viral email and responded to each of the supposedly wonderful things that America has left in the glorious past...

“We were born in the 40's,50's,60's,70's and survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us."

We survived? How many people born in those decades were born prematurely, and/or at a ridiculously low birth weight? How many now have cancer, asthma, diabetes, eating disorders, alcoholism and a host of other ailments?

Yep...let's bring back those good ol' days of smoking and drinking while sporting a big belly full 'o baby.

"They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing and didn't get tested for diabetes."

Yeah! And don't forget the boozing and puffing!

"After that 'trauma', our baby cribs were covered with brightly colored lead-based paints."

Which apparently DID cause brain damage, based on the number of people who continue to think America was so awesome back then.

"We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, knee pads, elbow pads, butt pads etc."

You know, my kids' lives have really had the fun sucked out by all this "safety". I mean really. Who was ever hurt by a good skull-cracking, or by downing a bottle or two of Drano?

"As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags. Riding in the back of a pick up on a warm day was always a special treat."

I especially liked it when we slammed into another car at about 80mph. (no speed limits either!) That feeling of sailing through the air is just something that can't be described, because those who experienced it are DEAD!

kids in pickup truck bed

"We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle. We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and no one actually died from this."

And there was something kind of COOL about having the same oozing cold sore as all of your friends!

Yes, this is my family.

"We ate cupcakes, bread and butter and drank soda pop with sugar in it (or a brewski in the case of my little cousin Joe here), but we weren't overweight because WE WERE ALWAYS OUTSIDE PLAYING!"

Except when we were at the dentist, or getting whacked upside the head for being “hyperactive”.

"We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on."

In fact, we'd keep track of how many men exposed themselves to us in the course of a day, or try to take us for a ride to shop for a new puppy. Or, we'd get to spend unsupervised "playtime" with our horny older cousins. Poor kids these days have to wait until high school to see someone else's genitals.

"No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K."

See above.

"We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem."

Actually, crashing into an oncoming garbage truck was even better. We were the original "Jackass".

This is from the Little Rascals, but I swear to god we made one almost identical to this.

"We did not have Playstations, Nintendos, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, no video tape movies, no surround sound, no cell phones, no personal computers, no internet or internet chat rooms..........WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!"

Until we grew up and sent this stupid list to everyone in creation on the [horrors] INTERNET!

"We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents."

Newsflash: no one is making money from "accidents". It's negligence that costs you.

"We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and ate worms and although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes, nor did the worms live in us forever."

Funny thing, a kid on my block actually DID lose an eye to a stick. But hell, that's why you get two, right?

"We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them!"

It was REALLY cool when we walked in and their mom and dad were doin' the wild thing!

"Cheerleaders and little league had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't, had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that!!"

Yeah. That came in handy when those over-sensitive females or other undesirables wanted to be on the team. And now you have all those fat cheerleaders. What is this world coming to?

"The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!"

This one brings back a particularly heart-warming moment in my own childhood when my father advised us: "Don't ever tell me the nun hit you or I'll give you twice as much." Man, I miss him.

"This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever!"

Not to mention psychiatric patients, child molesters, and serial killers.

"The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas."

You mean innovations like the aforementioned personal computers, the internet, child-safety caps and seatbelts?

"We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all! If YOU are one of them! CONGRATULATIONS! You had the good luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers, and the government regulated our lives for our own good."

And if you're one of the unlucky ones who ate lead paint, overdosed on your mother's Valium, or became a paraplegic after being thrown from your father's pickup truck...OH WELL!! At least you had fun!

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