Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Sixties

One of the books I have been reading lately is called "Boom! Voices of the Sixties". It is written by Tom Brokaw who for many years was a journalist and evening anchor on the NBC Nightly News. I am old enough to have lived through the Sixties but admittedly was also young enough to not always appreciate the significance of the many life changing events that occurred. Brokaw's book is a review of that tumultuous decade through the reflections of significant players and others that are less known. Many things happened in the Sixties that are still being felt in today's world. Let me just list some of the bigger events and accomplishments.

The Cuban Missile Crisis when Russia and the United States had a nuclear showdown.

The assassinations of John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr, Robert F. Kennedy, and Malcolm X.

The Vietnam War and the anti war movement.

The Civil Rights Movement/Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech/The March on Washington.

The Women's Movement with women moving into the workforce traditionally dominated by men.

The Democratic Convention of 1968 in Chicago and the violence surrounding it.

Vatican II when the entire Catholic Church was completely overhauled.

Hippies, The Summer of Love, Woodstock, and all that jazz.

Landing a man on the moon.

If you are my age or older you surely remember these events. If you are the age of my children or younger all of this may seem like ancient history. The world is far from perfect today but much of the progress we enjoy today was not part of everyone's life in the Sixties. It is said that those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it. Brokaw's book is not a scholarly or in depth review of the Sixties. It is more of a reunion of voices who lived through these events. I would recommend it as a great introduction to these times. The good lives and the rights and opportunities that many of us now have should not be taken for granted. They did not exist for many people less than 50 years ago. Let me remind you of a few other things. Most of the material possessions that most people take for granted today did not exist in the Sixties. There were no CD's, Ipods, personal computers, DVD players, microwave ovens, cell phones, Big Screen TV's, Internet, video games, email, etc. One thing that did exist in the Sixties that does not exist now is my hair.

It is probably premature to share this but I'm excited so I want to share some news. Someone that I know and respect has agreed to take on the project of editing and shaping the best of my daily thoughts into a book that we hope to get published sometime in the future. Some people have encouraged this so I am happy that it may finally happen. We're at the very beginning of this process so it will be a while before Oprah recommends it or the profits can pay for Chloe's college education. I'm not really in it for money. I just want to accomplish it. Sometimes dreams do come true so this one may become a reality for me.

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