Changes through the decades

Time, we know, doesn’t stand still. Things are constantly changing and we have to adapt or be stuck in the past or outdated reality. If I had to describe this year for me in one word, that one word would be change. From relationships to technology and losses, there has been constant change in my life. I’m not complaining as some of it was for the best, other changes just a part of life and others I just have to accept and move forward.
The older I get the less patience I have with people including myself. I also find I tolerate things less and less like people who keep doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different outcome. Or people who drop dogs off in other people’s yards for whatever reason. I also find I open my mouth a lot more than I used to do; especially over injustice.
I am learning that age has its benefits. You come to the realization of what is truly important and let go of those things which don’t really matter. I will declare that it is a process however. Doesn’t happen overnight and by no means am I where I need to be. Just like the name of my column which I have had for the last 40 years, Day at a Time, that is how I live life. After all, we aren’t promised tomorrow. That doesn’t mean we don’t have plans or dreams; we just know what’s important and what’s not. Each decade has it’s unique set of challenges and has brought changes with it.
I did not grow up in the 50’s but I have heard it said that the words “generation gap” became popular. Music lyrics kicked it up a notch and more people began having well paying jobs. Someone said of the 50’s that kids lost their innocence. Many television shows with morals like Leave it to Beaver, Father Knows Best, Gunsmoke, I Love Lucy etc. were born in the 50’s.
The 50’s brought color TV, credit cards, McDonalds, Barbie, the Cold War, TV dinners, Dunkin Doughnuts and birth control pills. Most families still ate most meals at home and moms had dinner ready when fathers came home. The mothers you saw on TV had pencil-thin waists and looked like they were ready to go out on a date as they cooked in the kitchen. Very few stores were actually open on Sunday.
Too young to really know what was going on in the 60’s but in reading about it, people began rejecting authority. A decade of protests began and everything began being questioned. The 60’s brought the Vietnam War and women grew tired of just being homemakers. Racial segregation in schools ended. President Kennedy and his brother were shot as was Martin Luther King, Jr. There was also a music revolution in the 60’s and drugs became prominent and morality began to take a nosedive. The 60’s gave us lava lamps, the game Twister and the Beatles. It brought us love beads, free love, and in 1969, we put a man on the moon. There were no child proof bottles, smoking was widely accepted and no one thought anything about riding in the back of a pickup truck. We played outside and respected our elders.
The 70’s brought us disco dancing. It could be said we lost the “love” that was prevalent in the 60’s. It became an “it’s all about me generation”. That decade gave us Nixon, Star Wars, the Village People, the Bee Gees and big hair. For me it was also the age of bell bottom pants and platform shoes. We started hearing about the high national debt and lots of talk about the end of the world. There was also a nostalgic side with retro movies depicting the 50’s such as Grease. Prayer was taken out of schools in 1962 and statistics on divorce and crimes have increased drastically.
If 70 kids lost their love, 80’s kids lost hope. They were stripped of innocence, authority and many quit believing in the future as they were plagued by the fear of a nuclear nightmare. The 80’s brought action figures, hair spray, the Walkman, Cabbage Patch Kids, boom box and spandex, along with Back to the Future, Gremlins and the Goonies and arcade games. Nighttime TV soap operas appeared like Dallas and Dynasty. Cable arrived on the scene but TV was still free. Mullets and afros for everyone were all the rage. Reagan became president and John Lennon was murdered and post it notes were invented.
The 90’s ushered in the beginning of people not being able to reason and common sense was nowhere to be found. The Cold War was over and the internet was changing how we do things and taking over our imaginations. Then Rodney King begins to tear our nation apart as does the Oklahoma City bombing. The 90’s gave us Bill Clinton, the O.J. Simpson trial, rap music and “Friends” which changed our view of relationships and being single. And we can’t forget the sitcoms South Park or Beavis and Butt Head, which I just could not watch. Originally fierce competitors, Microsoft saved Apple. Dial up and Netscape were our internet access catchwords. We grieved at learning that Princess Dianna had died in a car accident. Slap bracelets were all the rage and there were warnings about YK2 which would never be a real problem.
Then in the next two decades we truly  lost imagination and innocence and we let leaders and the media divide us more than ever. We see a lot more evil and we hardly even talk to each other face to face. Family meals are rare and when folks go out you see them spending more time with cell phones than dinner partners. We take offense to everything and feel that just because we have opinions we should force them on everyone. We went from being tolerant to tolerating nothing and have forgotten that we should love and pray for our enemies. We spread the hate and trash our politicians and complain about everything. Illegal drugs continue to be rampant and destroy people and families. Crime has increased in many areas and instead of working, people find time to go out and protest and destroy cities. You can find information on anything and everything if you just take the time to do the research but many had rather complain than take the time to find the truth.
We are in the age of irresponsibility and entitlement. We have lost our way and the only way back is to seek God. I challenge each of you to pray for this upcoming election like you have never prayed before in your life. God does hear the prayers of His people and I believe in 2 Chronicles 7:14. So pray, pray, pray and then vote your conscience based on your prayers. Only God can save our country from further destruction.©2016
VICTORIA SIMMONS is an author, columnist, motivational speaker, event planner, minister and publisher of The Georgia Post/Byron Buzz. Contact her at: vsimmons54@gmail.com

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About vsimmons54

Veteran journalist of 40 years. Editor, Motivational Speaker, Ordained Minister, CEO of A Light in the Darkness Ministries, Lensclusive Photography, Babbling Brook Consulting and Design, event planner and author. I love to write and speak and I love Jesus. I also do copy writing and editing. Recently co-authored Vanished Towns Revisited.
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