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View Diary: The Democratic Party, The Decline of Unions and Voter Apathy...Random Thoughts (94 comments)

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  •  Don't forget the Carpenters Union (9+ / 0-)

    They were also one of the first to break ranks and support Reagan.

    The Reagan years are an enigma...and it is where the newest division in what should be Class Solidarity arose...generational conflict.

    There was a generation (Gen X?) that came of age during Reagan's terms, who have no experiential knowledge of the modern history that predated them.  Just like I have no experiential memory of the race riots that rocked this country in the mid to late 60's.  I was born in 56, but I swear to you all that I have no memory of the race riots that took place in so many cities between 1965 and 1968.  I was watching cartoons.

    By the time I was of an age to understand politics and get interested in it, it was 1972.  By then, it was all about school busing and affirmative action.   I can remember Walter Cronkite's ticking off of the daily military death toll, and the associated "enemy casualties", of the Viet Nam War more vividly than I can the series of urban riots that took place at the same time across the nation.

    By the time 1980 came around, the country had changed in profound ways.  I was out of the country during Carter's second presidential run, in the Peace Corps, and remember tuning into a shortwave radio frequency in Costa Rica to follow the election results.  I no sooner found a station, and walked away to purchase a few beers to settle in with, before I returned to find that the election had been called already in Reagan's favor.  My jaw was at my feet.  It happened that fast.

    Look at pop culture in the 80's, though...especially Hollywood.  There was a whole generation of kids who never knew who some of the lions of the Democratic Party of decades past were, but grew up on Rambo, Ronald Reagan, Rocky draped in the American flag, Top Guns...it generation raised upon a sort of jingoism that would have been unheard of just 10 years earlier.

    We have short memories, as a people...and while I don't seek to fan intergenerational conflict...I also know that what happened 25 years ago may as well have happened a hundred years ago.  And what happened a hundred years ago may even be more well known.

    There's a lot of history that I was alive during that I still don't fully know.  The racial strife of the 60's is foremost in that category.  And I'd wager that most people in generations that followed me are just about equally unaware.  

    I'm guessing that topic doesn't appear on the standard history testing forms.

    Oregon: Sure...it's cold. But it's a damp cold.

    by Keith930 on Fri Jun 08, 2012 at 02:30:45 PM PDT

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    •  interesting (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Larsstephens, Zack from the SFV

      I am younger than you and I remember riots on TV, rocks thrown at our school bus on a field trip, and bodies coming home from the Vietnam War.  I watched cartoons on Sat morning, but my parents did not try to shelter us from the evening news

      -7.75, -6.05 And these wars; they can't be won Does anyone know or care how they begun?-Matt Bellamy

      by nicolemm on Fri Jun 08, 2012 at 06:54:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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