I am part of Generation X. My parents were born in 1946, the quintessential Baby Boomers. All my life I have heard about the Greatest Generation and the Baby Boomers and all they accomplished. Together they built the society we live in today.
And what a society it is.
My early years were defined by the Cold War. I was never sheltered from the truth. I knew that if there was a war that my proximity to a navy base was a blessing. It would be over quick. The threat of nuclear war was just background noise, a fact of life, a dark cloud that you learned to ignore.
What was scary to us was the use of resources. The country was going deeper and deeper into debt. Everyone knew that this meant economic hardships down the road. Forget counting on the government to help you in retirement like it would help our parents and grandparents. Social Security would be empty.
The oil crisis of the ‘70s made everyone realize that oil was not going to last forever. Three Mile Island and Chernobyl made us realize the risk of our nuclear future. As the environment was impacted, we worried about acid rain, polluted oceans, the shrinking Amazon, and growing Sahara. Debate global warming all you want, but do we need to keep putting poisons into the air every day?
When Columbia exploded, our hopes and dreams of escaping into space died.