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The Greatest Generation
Old 09-14-2006, 12:47 AM   #1
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The Greatest Generation

For those who do not recall my comments about elderly parents in the past, my 89 year-old Mother has been in a nursing home for 6+ years: hip breaks, Parkinson’s, various problems related to brittle bones.* The new facility administrator stooped by as I sat next to her bed today, she said “Your Mother is tired.”* In that small comment she summarized all I had been seeing these last couple weeks.* How true.

Recently I talked to a gal who known my parents 45 years ago.* Mom has been agitated and has been talking about a Black baby, asking me to look after him.* As we discussed her anxiety I recalled her action in the 40’s to address discrimination against Blacks in Portland after the end of WW II.* My 60 year old brother had never heard of her efforts, he was but a toddler then.* It was as if a whole new world had opened to him.

It will not be long when I will prepare her obituary.* As I look at the woman became, I see the foundation prepared for me to build upon.* She relished contributions of the refugees who became our neighbors after WW II.* Her husband and lover, my father, took me to see McCarthy hearings as a child.* To that generation I raise a toast: may I and their decedents build upon the foundation of values you laid for us.*
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Re: The Greatest Generation
Old 09-14-2006, 07:32 AM   #2
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Re: The Greatest Generation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brat

...To that generation I raise a toast: may I and their decedents build upon the foundation of values you laid for us.
Hear! Hear!

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Re: The Greatest Generation
Old 09-14-2006, 07:45 AM   #3
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Re: The Greatest Generation

Thanks for sharing.
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Re: The Greatest Generation
Old 09-14-2006, 08:07 AM   #4
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Re: The Greatest Generation

Brat,

When we were little kids, our parents were heros to us.

Isn't it nice to grow up find out that, yes, they really were heroes!

Some really rotten things have happened in this great country. Things are better today only because of people like your mom. Hats off to her.

Ed
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Re: The Greatest Generation
Old 09-14-2006, 10:51 AM   #5
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Re: The Greatest Generation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed_The_Gypsy
Brat,

When we were little kids, our parents were heros to us.

Isn't it nice to grow up find out that, yes, they really were heroes!

Some really rotten things have happened in this great country. Things are better today only because of people like your mom. Hats off to her.

Ed
It's funny how my parents (and grandparents) seem to get smarter as I get older.
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Re: The Greatest Generation
Old 09-14-2006, 12:19 PM   #6
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Re: The Greatest Generation

That is a nice tribute Brat, so I mean no disrespect - I too view my parents as heros. But I read a review recently of a contrarian book: The Greater Generation: In Defense of the Baby Boom Legacy by Leonard Steinhorn. He takes the position that the "Greatest Generation" gets too much credit because of WWII. The war was a big deal, but they had lots of faults as well.

From the book reviews on Amazon:

"The so-called "greatest generation," he says, imposed a cultural complacency whose worst elements included racism, sexual inequality and anti-Semitism."

"But what is the true legacy of the Boomers? Thats a question The Greater Generation answers by recalling the strides the Boomers made in Civil Rights, protesting Vietnam, pursuing Watergate, advocating womens and gay rights, and making a lasting impact on American society. Aimed at the heart of the culture wars, The Greater Generation is sure to create controversy."

"And despite an apparent conservative turn in America, says Steinhorn, boomer values have in fact permeated our society to the point where a younger generation takes them for granted."

We boomers have a lot of problems of our own but when I see news clips of Strom Thurmond or George Wallace in their heydays, I don't feel like we are the mere shadows of the "Greatest Generation."

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Re: The Greatest Generation
Old 09-15-2006, 08:49 PM   #7
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Re: The Greatest Generation

Especialy for someone from her generation, I have deep respect for your Mom as someone who cared about others regardless of class, race, etc. Her example has a lot to teach us. I think a fitting tribute to her would bre to carry on her legacy.
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Re: The Greatest Generation
Old 09-15-2006, 09:57 PM   #8
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Re: The Greatest Generation

I hope I have by impalnting those values in my children.*

Without realizing why, I ended up in a profession that supported those values.* After an early retirement from USDOL I became the Corporate EEO Officer for a well-known consumer products firm.*
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Re: The Greatest Generation
Old 09-15-2006, 11:10 PM   #9
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Re: The Greatest Generation

Quote:
As we discussed her anxiety I recalled her action in the 40’s to address discrimination against Blacks in Portland after the end of WW II.
Quote:
"And despite an apparent conservative turn in America, says Steinhorn, boomer values have in fact permeated our society to the point where a younger generation takes them for granted."

Sounds like Brat's Mom was a pre-boom boomer herself!* A woman before her time.*

It will be terrible to lose her, Brat.* But to have had such a wonderful mother with you for all these years...* few are so fortunate.*

Blessings to you both.
Caroline



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