The “Greatest Generation” wasn’t. Every generation has the ability to be great, even greater – but we, the people, lost sight of that somewhere between there and here, now. The “Greatest Generation” just had a lot less to be distracted by — like the Kardashians.
Once upon a time, about 100 years ago, in fact, we lauded those who defended freedom. World War I. World War II. … And yet we, the people, still cannot wrap our arms around those who answered the nation’s call to fight — and die — in Vietnam, never mind the Gulf War vets. Our national budget allocates more money to defense than medical care for those same soldiers. … But our elected officials (yes, the ones who OK’d and too often profited off those same wars) have the best healthcare.
Sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll. And? It’s not like the ’60s and ’70s invented sex. Or drugs. Or rock ‘n’ roll. Folks didn’t wake up one morning and say, “You know, let’s get nekkid, snort some blow, and crank Bruce to 11.”
Technology? Jobs and Woz didn’t reinvent the wheel. Gates didn’t corner the market. Facebook. Twitter. Instagram. Snapchat. OK, what’s next? I mean, it’s tomorrow, already. Vinyl gave way to 8-track, which succumbed to cassettes, which unraveled when compared to CDs, which yielded to .mp4s. … There’s a better mousetrap just beyond yonder horizon. Always.
“Work hard.” We’ve heard that all our lives. “Earn your keep.” Yep, if only folks would stop taking what I’ve worked hard to keep. Why is telling the truth considered politically incorrect? If you’re able, get a j-o-b — work hard and earn your keep. We, the people, pay for you, the able-to-work-but-won’t freeloaders, to live above your no-job means. So is it really too much to ask that those getting a handout pee in a cup?
When did a hashtag become a symbol for social justice? Why can’t #AllLivesMatter be enough? #Black #Cops #LGBT … c’mon — it’s catchy, and it is divisive. Once you draw a line around “your” group, we, the people, are either for you or against you. Why?
Bubba didn’t have sexual relations with that woman, and Dubya said there were WMDs in Iran. OK, so they lied. And we, the people, carried on because it was business as usual. They weren’t the first to lie. They will not be the last to lie. But when are we going to stand up and (figuratively?) light someone’s pants on fire?
There have been some fringe extremists who have sought the U.S. presidency, the likes of William Jennings Bryan, Earl Browder, Barry Goldwater, Ralph Nader, and Michelle Bachmann. Ultimately, common sense prevailed. But 2016 feels … different.
Do we really care if a Republican is in the Oval Office? Does it really matter if a Democrat occupies the White House? The power in D.C. resides on Capitol Hill; this is where real change should begin. First, we, the people, will have to take out the trash — aka lobbyists — before meaningful change can be enacted from either side of the aisle.
Now is our WTF moment.