I've been watching the CNN/Tom Hanks-produced series called The Sixties. I am a child of that time or rather I became a young adult during that decade (I turned 21 in 1967). It's a fascinating show for the photos and videos and interviews. It's not objective, of course, but it seems reasonably balanced in its presentation of ideas and selections. Last night, I watched the episode on 1968. The assassinations of Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King. The riots, the sit-ins. The defiance of us, the youth, who were so fed up with the war and the greed and the oppression of blacks and women and gays.
We had such hope for a peaceful revolution and that hope mostly died in 1968. The movements turned more extreme, especially after the egregious police brutality of Chicago during the Democratic convention, brutality witnessed by the nation and the world that never got responded to. A lot of our disrespect and indifference stems from that year, I think. And of course, there was Nixon, an unscrupulous politican from the get-go with Watergate the tip of the iceberg, ushering in decades of no integrity among many young people eager to get rich and get ahead.
We have not healed much of any of what ailed us then. Im not surprised it's all coming back around. We are in sad shape as a culture.