What defined your generation?

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What defined your generation? What events "made" your generation what it was?--Al

-- Al Schroeder (al.schroeder@nashville.com), April 30, 2000


Age 79 here. What defined my generation ? Two things I think. The depression and World War Two. We went without because nothing was there. People went back to the home farms where at least they could eat and sleep. City folks without farm relatives eked out what they could. It was a pride, dignity destroying time for the grown ups and a scuffed toe, knee out, hungry time for the boys this happening at a time when boys strive for self respect. It was not the fancy title the psycho-babblers talk about now. Just humble, common sense of self respect of being of worth to someone. World War Two was a gut wrenching time for all. Women wnt from home and child raising to work in the factories. Men were killed, they died many of them hungry, wet and cold. I think that they died with, "Why," on their lips or in their hearts if they had that instant of time to know. The return of the veterans to their families revealed to those at home how their men's lives were shrunken to a whisper of the potential they had before they went over. When more or less "peace" overcame our confused people, I think that the next phase of my generation came into use. The strong determination that their kids would NEVER have to go without as we did during the depression. In many cases we spawned unbelievable trouble, children who grew up receiving what ever they asked for and given into any time for really no reason at all. One last thing. In my opinion: Nobody "wins" a war, some one is usually called the victor, but both sides have lost an immeasurable amount of lives, time, non-handicapped men, health, material and money. The human race is the loser.

-- Denver doug (ionoi@webtv.net), April 30, 2000.

As a Norwegian, the defining moment of our generation was in the autumn of 1972, with Norway's referendum over joining the European Community (now the European Union). The politicians, ther urban middle class and virtually all who controlled the media wanted to join. But the common workers and rural people were sceptical, and felt that we would lose the freedom to rule our own country. There was a deep resentment and distrust of all who were in power, and the victory for the "No" side resulted in a cultural explosion for us who were young then. The next years saw a renaissance in rural culture that stayed with us until recently ... there are still some traces of it left. And probably will be, as long as this generation is alive.

-- Magnus Itland (itlandm@netcom.no), April 30, 2000.

Maybe the Gulf War, but really not for me. Politically defining moments in my own life would be when Reagan was shot and when he bombed Momarh Kadhfi, the Pope being stabbed, the Space Shuttle going down with Sally Ride, "anti" movements; anti-drunk driving, anti-abortion. PC became a big term in two concepts: personal computer and politically correct, both had a HUGE defining impact on my entire generation. I'm at a loss, but I am sure there is so much more, another issue that comes to mind would certainly be being "served" (ha) by an impeached President.

-- Glenna B. Yarnot (Glenna@Yarnot.cncfamily.com), April 30, 2000.

Well, the Gulf War went on when I was in high school and I had a boyfriend in the service, so that did have a big affect on me. Also the pro-life/pro-choice debate was going strong, to the point where we weren't allowed to talk or write about it in my high school classes. Teachers were just sick of hearing it. There was Tipper Gore and the PMRC, and then a little later in college the improved rights for lesbian/gay people. I tried to balance myself between having strong personal convictions with respecting other people's views, unless the views were completely unacceptable to me, like hatred and bigotry.

-- AJ (joijoijoi@hotmail.com), April 30, 2000.

The Gulf War definied quite a bit of the generation I grew up in. I remember seeing friends and family members being sent off to the Gulf to help out in different areas. I have to admit that even though I was not born during the time the Vietnam War was going on, it defined who I am as a person. My father fought in that war. He was ready to give his life to fight that war. He almost did lose his life in that war and he is still suffering pain every day of his life because of that war. I find myself meeting people all around the world not wanting to hear about the war, the effects of the war (both positive and negative) or about the people who survived through the war and it saddens me. It saddens me to believe that the nation can shut themselves off from something like the Vietnam War just because it was "for no good reason," as some are led to believe.

I think that since my father almost died over there and received a purple heart because of it, us people, as Americans, are obligated to honor a little Vietnam Nostalgia in respect for all of the people who did give their lives or who did fight with their lives over in Vietnam.

-- Meg (meghlcl@aol.com), April 30, 2000.

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