Welcome to my blog of lists and stories that demonstrate the commonalities and differences between two of the largest generations who just happen to be inhabiting the U.S.A. at the same time. There are 74.9 million Baby Boomers, (ages 51-69) and 75.4 million Millennials, (ages 18-34) Totaling almost half of our current population of 318.9 million. I will be researching, discovering, and reporting on exactly what that means for all Americans. These numbers represent two generations that need to learn from one another and then work together for real change. Not change filled with bombastic, bloviating hate and lies, but change filled with American values, as defined in our constitution and promotes the well-being of Americans. I know this is quite the project and it will be quite the journey, but it is a journey I am eager and excited to tackle.
For full disclosure, I am a Baby Boomer and I never want to return to the 1950s. That decade never worked for me as a human being and it won’t work for me now as an aging white woman. Put aside the frumpy fashion, the lack of kitchen gadgets, the plastic covered chairs and lampshades, please. . . and focus on the cruel human side of exclusion during the 50s, which highlighted women, people of color, mentally ill, differently abled, mentally challenged, non-Christians, LGBTQ, and other “rejects” of society who never knew equality in America. As a Baby Boomer, I worked hard in my personal and professional life, to help America lose the notion of rejecting any human being from society. My hope is that this blog brings our efforts and the efforts of our children together to end any legislation or further notion of bigotry, disrespect, hatred, wars, or inequality that may pop-up in the coming years. We must never return to the 1950’s in our legislation, our hearts, and our souls. Yes America, I finally have my own “Soap Box.”
So here is my first list itemizing the different worlds we were born into-
|Baby Boomers (1947-1964)||Millennials 1982-1998|
|1947 World Population totals 2.5 Billion||1982 World population totals 4.610 Billion|
|The fear of communism spreads and is called, “Red Scare.” Who spreads this fear? Politicians-1947||The fear of terrorism spreads and spreads and spreads leading many Americans to commit “hate crimes” against innocent American citizens. And who spreads this fear? Politicians, of course. 1993|
|Cold War begins 1941||Cold War ends 1991, Berlin Wall falls!|
|Gandhi was assassinated -1948||Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister of India is assassinated-1984|
|NATO is established-1949||The European Union ratification-1993|
|Israel becomes a sovereign nation bringing the number of nations to 106-1948||191 official sovereign countries in the world-1998|
|Federal Republic of West Germany becomes a communist nation-1949||East and West Germany unite into one country once again-1990|
|Communism blooms in China with Mao Zedong-1949||Taliban reign of terror, enforcing Sharia Law and oppressing women, killings, and beheadings ensued-1996|
|Apartheid begins in South Africa-1948||South African Parliament finally ends Apartheid-1994|
|U.S.A. sends troops to fight in the Korean War- 1952
U.S.A. sends troops to fight in Vietnam-1959
|Persian Gulf War begins with U.S.A. troops-1990; Rwanda commits genocide against the Tutsis-1994; U.S.A. sends troops to fight in Bosnia-Herzegovina-1995|
|Space Race between USSR and USA begins-1959||Computer technology quickly becomes the norm in education and in homes with the introduction of the World Wide Web-1989|
|President J.F. Kennedy assassinated-1963; Malcolm X assassinated-1965; Martin Luther King assassinated-1968; Robert Kennedy assassinated-1968||First attempt to bomb World Trade Center in a terrorist attack-1993
Oklahoma City bombing, domestic terrorist killed 169 people including children-1995
|1965 World Population totals 3.345 Billion||1998 World Population totals 5.918 Billion|
Thank you Infoplease.com
Baby Boomers grew up terrified of a nuclear war, hiding under the safety of our desks and believing that nothing would hurt us there. I remember watching a classmate with a broken leg struggle to get under her desk, while her cast and leg lay in the aisle. I remember feeling so sorry for her because she would most certainly lose her leg. Then I dreamed up this fantasy. See, no one could beat me at jacks (a game with a bouncy ball and six-pronged metal pieces). I held the title of Champion of the Playground in the late 1950s at Crestview Elementary on Vandenberg Air Force Base. So, I sincerely thought that I could challenge a Soviet girl my age to jacks; I would win and there wouldn’t be any war and we would become friends. Give me a break, I was nine and that is exactly how simple life in the 50s appeared to me.
As we grew older we found out that being under our desks was the most orderly way to disintegrate during a nuclear war which, did not comfort any of us. We later laughed about the antics our government put us through, but it wasn’t a hearty laugh, more of a nervous laugh and it wasn’t the only antic our government would subject us to.
Today Millennials and Baby Boomers share a nervousness and fear about terrorism and the notion that it will strike at any moment and there won’t be any desks to crawl under. One of our highest profile, pompous, fearful leaders (whose name will never be mentioned in this blog) even bragged in a Tweet that he was right in predicting the next terrorist attack that sadly came in the form of a hate crime in Orlando, Florida. This inappropriate comment did not support the necessary healing process for the victims, their beloved families and those of us who weep each time this happens. What it did do was motivate his followers to lash out at innocent American-Muslims in vicious and violent ways. Months later this installation of fear remains as a vent for those who feel it is their right to hurt, maim, and/or kill people with different beliefs. Instilling fear is no way to run a democratic country with a constitution that abhors violence and murder; however, it does work rather well in autocratic dictatorships. That is why Baby Boomers and Millennials must unite, protest, campaign through all social media, run for office, VOTE, and change our beloved country.
What did I learn from my blog and timeline?
- the world is certainly a scary place
- the world population has doubled
- peace is an illusion
- universal problems should be resolved through negotiations
- war is seldom the answer
- we are all products of the political egos of our time
- fear is used for politicians’ personal agendas.
- many events that began with the birth of Baby Boomers ended during the birth of Millennials
- and it only took 51+ years!
Please let me know what you learned from my makeshift timeline.
- How does it feel to know that many of the world’s horrors like South Africa’s Apartheid lasted for more than four and half decades?
- Could you now live with change moving as slowly as 51 long years?
- Why do countries always have to compete when new ideas and technology, that benefit everyone, could fly much faster if we worked together?
- How do you see real change taking place?
Thanks for reading my first blog. I hope to hear from you for a real conversation on change. More Anon!