Why…

…do we children of the 80’s get so nostalgic about that decade? Why do we talk about the 80’s as if it were the greatest decade ever? I never hear people who grew up in the 90’s waxing nostalgic about that decade. My dear wife and I were discussing this today over breakfast. Was there something unique about the 80’s that you don’t find with other decades? You don’t hear nostalgic songs being written about the 90’s, as far as I know. It is just very interesting to me. I love Bucky Covington’s song about the 80’s (though I didn’t like him that much on American Idol).

I know that there was a lot about the 80’s that was bad. It was very decadent and hedonistic. But there was an “innocence” about it as far as childhood goes that I don’t think was true of the 90’s. I could be wrong. Dead wrong. I’m trying to put my finger on why we tend to idolize that decade. Was it just because that was when we were children? I don’t know. Somebody help me. Please!

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About Rev. Paul L. Beisel

Graduate of Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN in 2001 (M Div.) and 2004 (S.T.M.); LC-MS Pastor and Adjunct Instructor for John Wood Community College; Husband of Amy and father of Susan, Elizabeth, Martin, and Theodore.
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6 Responses to Why…

  1. Lawrence says:

    We reminisce about our youthful hopes and dreams. Its not about the hitorical calendar date so much as it is about our birth date. Its not about the innocense of the times, but rather the innocense of our youth.

  2. Rev. Paul L. Beisel says:

    Good comment Lawrence. You are probably right. Although, after writing this post, I thought that perhaps it has something to do with the fact that many of us see the 80’s as a time of greater national liberty and we long for those days again. As a child, I thought nothing of the fact that you could drive without wearing seatbelts and smoke virtually anywhere (these are just a couple of representative examples). As an adult, I see these seemingly small liberties being taken away from Americans, and more “regulation” being imposed. Smoking bans and seatbelt laws might seem like insignificant things, but in my opinion, it is the government trying to “micromanage” its citizens. The decade of the eighties represents, perhaps, a time of minimal government micromanaging in the lives of citizens.

  3. Alan says:

    I can’t speak for anyone else, but for me, the 80s was the time before my illusions about the world were shattered. The world seemed like a safer place–in the midst of the cold war, even–and we didn’t worry about bombings in our workplaces or shooting rampages in our schools. The music was light and fluffy, as opposed to grunge music which became popular in the early 1990s. The nation’s president seemed like a grandfather. Maybe I’m too naive even now, but it seemed safer to be naive then.

  4. Lawrence says:

    From my perspective government micromangement of the lives of citizens in the USA began with FDR’s ‘New Deal’ policies. But the 80s in my view saw a resurgence of U.S.A. dominance in world affairs that isolated us in many respects from a lot of the world’s growing problems, thereby giving me a sense of hope in the future. Hope that our current administration is squashing in their mad rush toward Neo-Marxism.

  5. Polly says:

    I’m 43, so for me the 70s were the Good Ole Days. I think that’s because I enjoyed having extended family around – my older cousins were still in the area, my aunts and uncles were funny and vital, my grandparents were still living. — I enjoyed all these people without the burden of knowing about human nature or seeing anyone’s faults. Church was fun, not political. I didn’t feel obligated – no responsibilities.

    Although now as an adult, when I read about the news headlines in the 70s, it must have been a pretty dark time indeed!

  6. knichole84 says:

    I was born in 84 so I’m a child of the 90’s…me and my friends reminisce about that decade a lot as well! I think like the first poster said, you idealize the times of your innocence!

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