Making America Great in the 40’s & 50’s
I remember traveling the Interstate Highway System as a kid with my brother and parents. Mom squealed in delight as she traveled the new four-lane roadways. If you’d asked her back then, she’d have pointed to the highway infrastructure built following her childhood in Missouri as the single greatest feat engineered by citizens and government in ‘Making America Great.’
Of course, if you asked her mother, my grandma would have instantly reported that indoor plumbing, the electric light bulb, and the electric washer and dryer were the greatest inventions ever created. (Although both of them used outdoor plumbing as long as my great-grandparents were alive.)
It isn’t just about Highways and Gadgets!
Okay. Then what about getting a college education? Are we less educated today than we were in 1950?
In 2015, around 32.7 percent of women graduated college or obtained a higher educational degree. Compared to 1940, more than eight times more women have attended college and nearly six times more men have in 2015. (Source: Statista)
Students are now better educated than the average American was when I was a kid. That’s encouragnig news when it comes to my sons and grandkids. Although, I still believe if you work hard and learn as you go along, you can be successful.
Opportunities have changed since I was a kid, but there’s still room for a dedicated individual to learn a profession from the ground up. The key is simply to believe this country offers those who work hard more opportunities than those who think they can glide through life without working for their dreams.
So, What Is It Making America Great?
Can We Do Better?
If you follow my thought processes, you’ll find that I believe we can always do better. My goal is to do better than I did yesterday each day of my life. It’s senseless in my opinion to consistently compete with others. I’ve found the surest way to improve myself is to concentrate on being better tomorrow than I am today. I compete only with myself.
As we approach Memorial Day and pay our respect to our fallen heroes, what do you want to see that will make America the great place I grew up in during the 1950’s?
- We can smile each time we meet someone on the street.
- We can pitch in and take food, friendship, and a helping hand to someone’s home when there’s death in the family.
- If the electricity goes out and you have a generator, invite friends and neighbors over.
- If the neighbor’s barn burns, organize a barn-raising party.
- When a child is starving, (in this country or another) donate a few bucks.
- Show respect to your elders, even when they sometimes don’t deserve it.
- Stop making yourself the center of the Universe.
- Instead of sitting back and doing nothing about the things that bother you, pitch in and make a difference.
- Make your local, state, and federal government responsible for keeping our infrastructure updated and safe.
- Instead of throwing out food, take some to the local shelter.
- Plant a garden and share the surplus.
- Start planning for your child’s education before you bring them home from the hospital.
- Show respect for those who chose to worship in a different way.
- Give our Allies a reason to work with us.
- Before you share damaging information on anyone, do some fact checking.
- If you need to accept assistance, make sure you donate an equal amount of time an effort today or later for the good of your community.
- Conserve and preserve our precious water resources.
- Protect our clean air.
- Make your voice heard: VOTE.
- Reduce waste and compost.
- Get Active. If you’re overweight, you’re part of our healthcare crises.
- Check on the Seniors you know. Their care may soon be running out.
- Support renewable energy to protect our environment.
- Protect our national forests and parklands.
- Buy fresh – It helps your local growers and is healthier.
- Offer a day of your time to your city to clean up trash or improve parklands.
- Downsize, you don’t need everything. Donate to a local charity.
- Be kind. It’s a simple concept, but I now miss the days when I used to go to the grocery store, and people smiled back at me.
- Learn to be a good example around young people. They notice everything you do.
- If you’re unemployed, find a job. Even a part-time job is a beginning and reduces your dependence on others.
I could continue into the early morning hours with this list, but you get the idea!
WE are what makes America Great!
You and I are the answer to what ails this country, and it’s up to us to put in some effort.
The days of sitting back, groaning, and expecting someone else to step forward are over.
Remember the men and women who have died to protect your right to live here, make a difference, and improve not only America but the world.
We are all depending on YOU! You and I are the HOPE for a greater tomorrow