Skip to comments.We’re Not Gen-X, We’re Gen-Reagan
Posted on 06/07/2004 1:31:59 PM PDT by Cinnamon Girl
Were Not Gen-X, Were Gen-Reagan
This is for everyone who was raised to believe that our young lives would soon end in a nuclear war, of mutually assured destruction, quivering under our school desks with President Reagan to thank for making the pink and gray tile on our classroom floors the last thing we would ever see.
This is for those of us raised in the post-graduate, post-doctorate suburbs where Volkswagens and Volvos taught us that we cant hug our children with nuclear arms and that war is not healthy for children and other living things.
This is for the generation that grew up watching Welcome Back, Kotter, Laverne & Shirley, Cosby Show and hundreds of bad impressions of President Reagan as a shellac haired cowboy buffoon who didnt have a thought in his head, followed by impressions of Dan Quayle as a simple minded bad speller who attacked the beloved Murphy Brown for having a baby and no husband, followed (in our adulthood) by monkey-like caricatures of the ignorant and stupid cowboy-war-monger President Bush.
We know who we are. We accept the moniker Generation X and we dont even know what the heck that means. It might have something to do with being jaded and feeling crappy about dolphins in canned tuna, and about the tragic death of Kurt Cobane. It probably refers to a specific group of people who saw every John Hughes teen movie and point to The Breakfast Club as a virtual documentary. It has never signified the Generation that grew up feeling good about America because of President Ronald Reagan.
Our generation went from an early childhood of Jimmy Carter, a droopy peanut farmer with big teeth and a hostage crisis, to a happy, energetic, powerful and confident Republican president who suddenly made politics interesting.
I remember watching a Carter/Reagan debate by myself one night when my mom was out. There was no doubt in my mind that Ronald Reagan would be president. He was irresistible, and he made America sound like an exciting, attractive place.
I remember collapsing on the couch in the family room, feeling as if Id been punched in the stomach, the day President Reagan was shot. It was in middle school. There was no discussion of the event by teachers or even the principal. My happiness that he would survive was a quiet and personal event.
While family friends and neighbors continued to wring their hands, and angrily mock what they called Reagans Star Wars fantasy, I remember him saying Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall! He just seemed really gutsy. And my neighbors, who said Visualize World Peace, and meant it, seemed passé. Action, not words. That was hot.
In high school, I remember a school assembly before Reagans re-election. Nobody in our debate team wanted to be on the pro-Mondale side. Reagans second big win was a done deal and everyone knew it. Even before we could convincingly articulate our reasons for supporting President Reagan, and long before we could vote for him, we knew he was great, and that he was helping us.
In college, I waited in a long line of other students at USC to vote for President Reagans then Vice President, G.H.W. Bush. When I finally got to a voting booth, inside the small house of a Mexican-American family, I noticed on their mantle, a big framed photograph of President Reagan. Thats right. That is right.
When his second term was over, President Reagan came to speak at USC. Somehow, I managed to get a seat in the fully packed auditorium to see President Reagan in person. The standing ovation, when he took the stage, was 11 minutes long. And he was dazzling, of course. We were all riding the high for a long while afterward.
The first time I went to the Reagan Library, I was most impressed by the big chunk of graffitied Berlin Wall sitting outside, above the valley. I knew what that was about. That was a part of my growing up memories.
Tonight, I plan to go again to the Reagan Library, to pay my respects to the man who had a greater influence on my generation than any other person the media or the pundits bring to mind.
Thank you, President Reagan. G-d Bless you. And G-d Bless America.
I think you missed my point!
I don't like modern bumpers because they're painted - thus, bumper stickers can ruin the paint (a`la removal). So I certainly don't want to stick these things on the body of my car.
Even if its a magnet, there's still a risk you'll do something to the body paint of your car by slapping/peeling off the magnet even once much less multiple times. The less touchy, the better! I prefer sticking to bumpers. Having stickers *there* is ugly enough, anyway!
OK, 1st question is: what is the mathematical definition of a generation?
Obviously by this list (I have seen it before), there is no defined time range! That's ridiculous in itself.
20 years MITE be an acceptable average range for a generation. Altho since we're so communicative in the last century, we often define ourselves more narrowly - by decades.
To me, the average generation-length ("gestation", if you will) is 30 years - but that's considering how old you are having children, how old your mom & dad were, how old your grandparents were, etc, all when they had children. Which muddles it, cuz people are having kids all the time.
I don't like this method! Let's just go back to naming decades, not naming ethereal "generations" of varying scope!
"Generation X" was the title of a very stupid 1991 book by Canadian author Douglas Coupland. It portrayed some of the dismay and chagrin of those of us who are younger than the Baby Boomers, upon our realization that we will be destroyed by their selfish greed and the bonfire of their many-vanitied social agendas.
And yet you call yourself "Valley Gal"? LOL
My sister and brother graduated HS late '70s and started college then. They were definitely in the disco era - and my sister was a disco queen (bro more of a metal-head). ;-D
I have my Bush/Cheney sign up on my lawn. And I just ordered two cling decals from a site that say "I support President Bush and our Troops" I had a W sticker on my old truck so I had to replace for the new truck. Can't wait to get them!
The "Arnold for Governor" signs Humanshield put in the front of the apartment buildings were stolen about six times.
Oh funny, I would have hid in the bushes to catch the thief!
Remember St. Elmo's Fire; well that is how we dressed in the 80's. Our socks were tucked over our jeans and we wore that with sneakers, I had pink sneakers, what was I thinking. I will always love my high hair. These days it is short but still high. My husband measure it and lets me know when I have reached my highest point.
I think they include Ben Franklin's generation. I actually have the book at home (both "Fourth Turning" and "13th Generation"), but forgot to look at them last night.
My hair was basically short but spiked on top. Up to some 3". I loved it - and my pals were always patting me on the head to see if it would squash down!
I just loved the spiffy happy neon and pastels! Yes, I'll do that again any time - if we can find the clothes!
You should read The Fourth Turning. It explains ALOT about "our" generation--all of them in fact.
I don't know where you were during the '70s, but I wouldn't term those times "prosperous" for my family by any stretch. But, you're due your view about my generation. I'm sure not all Boomers are idealistic job-squatting middle managers who can't stop getting teary-eyed everytime they hear Joan Baez or see "The Big Chill."
And, don't forget....."Conjunction junction; what's your function?"
Then there was, "I'm just a Bill."
Interesting take. I like it. And since we grew up under Reagan, and were too young to be jaded and demoralized by Vietnam, Watergate, etc., we ended up being more optimistic and patriotic than the Boomers -- we are Reagan's kind of people.
I have a friend who says he had no idea his wife was so short until the 80's finally passed and she quit "teasing" her hair up.
I remember when they opened the first machine. The Dem guy was there, my dad, me and a poll worker or two. The count in the first machine was Reagan 847 and Carter had under 300. Andersen and Clark had a few too. My dad sort of let out a holler there. The other two machines had similar results. I remember my dad racing home with the numbers to call the Reagan campaign to report figures. My dad was so happy. He called the Viginia HQ, and reported the numbers. They told him that it was going overwhelmingly for Reagan.
I remember the hostages coming home after the inauguration, and how everyone seemed so happy after he was elected.
In 1984, I was a Freshman in HS. I remember everyone had a Reagan button. People had pictures of RR in their locker, next to Eddie Van Halen. Quite a site.
LOL that's real cute!
Where did you live? I wish I could say like you and some others that my home was full of Reagan-lovers. I didn't see such things in school (and it looks like we're the exact same age). Too much liberalism still. MD is Democratist country, always was. I think we squeeked in for Reagan in '84, but that was a close 1. Not enough to see kids sporting Reagan/Republican stuff. Or maybe we were all scared to show it, knowing how liberal our area is!
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