The America We Grew Up In

“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.”

Ronald Reagan


Comedian Jeff Allen recalls America before the lawyers took over.  Allen and I are of approximately the same vintage.  We did not really grow up in a golden age, it merely seems so now with a nanny state run amok, futilely attempting to build a risk free utopia where all special snowflakes are to be preserved in amber from that very hazardous adventure known as life.  I pity kids growing up today, and I am glad that I grew up in a time when most adults were attempting to raise future adults, teaching us early to take part in the rewards and risks of life, instead of today when too many adults, never having fully grown up themselves, are raising perpetual children.  The child is father to the man has become the child is father to the childish adult.  Old man rant off.

Q: Au contraire, he’s the person you wanted to be. One who was less arrogant, and undisciplined as a youth. One who was less like me. The Jean-Luc Picard you wanted to be, the one who did not fight the Nausicaan, had quite a different career from the one you remember. That Picard never had a brush with death, never came face to face with his own mortality, never realised how fragile life is or how important each moment must be. So his life never came into focus. He drifted for much of his career, with no plan or agenda, going from one assignment to the next, never seizing the opportunities that presented themselves. He never lead the away team on Milika Three to save the ambassador, or took charge of the Stargazer’s Bridge when its Captain was killed. And no one ever offered him a command. He learned to play it safe. And he never, ever got noticed by anyone.

Tapestry, aired February 15, 1993, Star Trek The Next Generation episode



More to explorer


  1. I think it’s a small minority of insufferable people whose preferences are imposed on everyone else because they are in line with the social ideology and guild interests of certain occupational groups, school administrators and lawyers in particular. This is, in turn, sustained by the nonfeasance of our elected officials.

  2. You know how Chesterton said that reformers are often right about what’s wrong, but wrong about what’s right?

    Parents these days have to parent differently– because parents actually parenting isn’t the default, anymore. There are enough feral kids that you have to do the job for them, too, at least as far as it hurts your kid.

    Just like the ‘metoo’ and college sex freakouts– they destroyed tradition, and then discover why it was there.
    As Nate quoted a while back:
    “Tradition is a set of solutions for which we have forgotten the problems. Throw away the solution and you get the problem back.”

  3. Well, we lost the the maternal safety net that allowed kids to range freely through the neighborhood (and arguably the neighborhood as well); so we had to replace it with something more structured.

    Now we have a generation of neurotics who’ve been taught that they must achieve self actualization, when all they’ve ever experienced is other-directedness.

    And thus, the life-coach grift was born.

  4. And thus, the life-coach grift was born.

    The life-coach grift took some market share away from the counseling grift, which in turn had taken market share away from the psychotherapy grift. Net injury to society has been nil.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: