This is Our Generation

the1960s.jpgWhen Newsweek came in the mail this week, I was suprised to see the cover story.  It looked like a birthday party and said “1968: The Year That Made Us Who We Are.”  I looked at it a few days, wondering what was so special about 1968.  It was 39 years ago, and since it’s almost 2008, it was the presidential election four decades ago.  I didn’t make a connection– until I opened it and finally read the article.  And I must say it was a great article.

The promise of Barack Obama’s presidential campaign is that he is going to lead a “new generation.”  Last week, when being interviewed by FOX News, he said the main difference between him and Hillary Clinton is “Senator Clinton and others have been fighting some of the same fights since the ’60s.  It makes it very difficult for them to bring this country together to get things done.”  He claims he is not of the ’60s.

I say, how could he not be? With several parallels between today and the ’60s, the only way to win this election is not to deny being a product of the ’60s, but to embrace that fact.

Three Things the ’60s Taught Us:

In the years of American Bandstand and the Beatles, there was a lot going on in Washington. 

The Civil Rights Movement.  It taught us that we are all created equal regardless of race.  So then, why are there still race issues?  Just last week, a student editor hung a noose in a university newsroom, and he was fired on the spot.  It was an issue of race.

Women’s Rights.  We can’t talk about the ’60s without mentioning women’s rights.  Then why are women still not treated the same as men?  Why are there single mothers who are barely getting by?

Vietnam.  Didn’t the war in Vietnam teach our nation anything?  Vietnam was supposed to teach us to be a “humble superpower” and yet we are making the same mistakes in Iraq.

The 1960s taught us a lot, but this is Our Generation.  The 2008 election will mean as much to America as the 1968 election did.

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “This is Our Generation

  1. Lauren Demirjian

    Lauren Demirjian (Intro to Public Relations TR 11am-12:15pm)

    While I agree that several issues are being repeated as significant in the upcoming 2008 election, I believe there are future issues that are not related to the ’60’s and may have even more weighted importance. For example, the issues surrounding environmental concerns, not just in the US, but worldwide are very pressing for manufacturing industries because the government’s are overlooking these consequences in order to bring more efficiency to their economies. Also, the growth of the techonological sectors and our shifting economy from a manufacturing to a service centered one is so relevant because it has been probably the most significant impact over the last 20 years, and is still in full swing. However, one issue that may not have been mentioned is the consequence of the population distribution (age-wise in terms of aging baby boomers) and our lack of energy sources. Innovations for new energy is going to be a pressing issue very soon with oil prices sky rocketing, and the arab nations (with whom we are trying to encourage peace) controlling the majority of the world’s oil supply. Thus, while there are some similar social issues carrying over into the upcoming 2008 presidential election from the 1968 election, there are ever important current issues that will have to be addressed in the near future.

  2. Ariane Dadisman

    I agree that the 60’s are completely relevant. There has never been a moment in life where the past has not had some sort of relevance. The past helps us progress in the future. If the 60’s don’t matter today, then i suppose the Declaration of Independence doesn’t matter either..since it was much further back in history than the 60’s.
    I think everything from the past should matter in modern politics. This country is based on a foundation from the past. We need that to be our guide to a better future and a better country. Many issues take years to resolve. In the case of women’s rights, we still have steps to take, even after all of these years. We do not get paid as much as men in an equal position of employment. Anyone who thinks the past is not relevant is mistaken. The past is the reason we have a present and certainly a guide to us having a future. Mr. Obama just appears to be trying TOO hard to offset his competition with Mrs. Clinton. Can you smell his fear?

  3. Marie Daher

    The Presidential election of 2008 has become one of the largest elections. For the last eight years, the American people have had to suffer with George Bush in office, taking us two steps backward instead of two steps forward. With candidates such as Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, it looks like the United States might actually be ready for a change. However the real change wont happen if the president is yet again the typical white male. The United States has come a long way since 1968, but sometimes it seems like we haven’t the way people still feel and act towards others. People need to wake up and realize that it isn’t 1968, it’s 2008. Hopefully America is ready for a president that isn’t a white male, other countries certainlly have.

  4. Carrie Cooney

    I agree that we have been making the same mistakes as we did back in the 60’s. Not much has changed in this world except the year and its dates. The author proves crucial points with women still being treated unequal. Just today one of my professors referred to the world as a, “mans world.” Men have endless oppurtunities and women get stuck under a glass ceiling. In the sixties we were influenced by music by bands such as the beatles who sang many songs against the war. Today we are still influenced by artist singing songs against the war in Iraq. History is doomed to repeat itself. This author nailed it.

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