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Old 01-05-2010, 03:13 PM
 
2,601 posts, read 4,069,591 times
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Back in the 50's and 60's, most families had one car, dad went to work, and mom stayed home with the kids. This was the norm then - families didn't need two incomes to survive. Kids played outside in the summer; and inside, played with board games (such as Sorry, Monopoly, checkers, etc.) They didn't have video games, IPods, Wii Games, etc. Dishes were usually done by hand, and clothes were hung on the clothesline to dry.

Obviously, with advances in technology, our lives are easier now. Does this make our lives better? Advances made in medicine are definitely a good thing. Would we be better off with one car and less time spent at the office? Would most families be able to survive (comfortably) on one income? Were we better off as a whole then or now?
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Old 01-05-2010, 03:29 PM
 
Location: Concrete jungle where dreams are made of.
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1950s definitely. I was born in the wrong time period. My family has always told me that.
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Old 01-05-2010, 03:32 PM
 
Location: Zurich, Switzerland/ Piedmont, CA
32,322 posts, read 55,131,075 times
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For women and minorities, its much better now.
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Old 01-05-2010, 03:53 PM
 
Location: Lower East Side, Milwaukee, WI
2,945 posts, read 4,146,935 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 18Montclair View Post
For women and minorities, its much better now.
That's debatable. I think a Black man would've had an easier time getting a job in a factory in Detroit or Pittsburgh back in the 60's than he would today. Manufacturing was the backbone of our country; it provided decent wages and benefits to people (of all colors) without college educations.

Today, households require two incomes just to survive, let alone prosper. Women no longer have the choice of being homemakers. Households used to be able to survive on one income, and people had huge families back then. A family could own a house, a car, maybe a boat if they were lucky, put away money for retirement and their kids' college, and they could still afford to take a vacation every summer, all off of a single income earner. Those days are long, long gone.
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Old 01-05-2010, 04:11 PM
 
Location: Miami/ Washington DC
4,836 posts, read 10,183,245 times
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Now: People are more educated, back then one income was enough for your normal home and one car, now two incomes are enough for 2-3 cars, tv, computer, electric, travel around the world once a year etc.. Back then if I went to college out of state I would come home once a year. I can come home once a month these days. I am going abroad for 4 months on wednesday, I will be able to keep in contact with all my friends, family, girfriend etc.. in a matter of seconds using a cell phone anywhere in europe. I do not know what I would do without the internet I have learned so much from it from just reading random things.
Keeping in touch with people is so much easier, travel is so much easier and cheaper, technology is better, people live longer, better medicine everything is better. Only bad thing is kids do not play outside as much. I never had that problem when I was growing up in the 90s-2002. Besides for that everything is better these days.
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Old 01-05-2010, 05:54 PM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
13,856 posts, read 22,955,873 times
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For me it would obviously be now. My Dad idealizes the 50s, but he agrees that in my case now is a better time. I have a genetic condition called osteogenesis imperfecta. I've read of a couple people like me, back then, who had jobs but generally survival rate for my condition was lower and living in an institution more likely than today. Also childhood diseases kill less now than they did then.

However for an able-bodied heterosexual Midwestern adult, particularly a man, without a college degree I could see the 1950s as better. The middle-class did better then than now and manufacturing was stronger. The murder rate in the 1950s was generally lower than even now. Cities like Cincinnati and Detroit were doing better than now I think. If you were disabled, mentally ill, black in a Southern state, Catholic in the Appalachian South, or 3-10 years old than today is probably better.
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Old 01-05-2010, 06:10 PM
 
Location: Concrete jungle where dreams are made of.
8,900 posts, read 13,232,834 times
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Well, the only downside about the 1950s was that it would be extremely rare for a woman like me to play ice hockey. It was hard enough facing discrimination in the early 90s when there weren't many playing then. That's the only reason why I wouldn't like it.

And back then, it was much easier for the middle class to have a good quality of life. Now, not so much.
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Old 01-05-2010, 06:15 PM
 
Location: Blankity-blank!
11,449 posts, read 14,308,172 times
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Ah yes, the fifties! Send a money order for $2.50 and 5 box-tops to Battle Creek, Michigan, and, two weeks later, receive a color TV.
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Old 01-05-2010, 06:17 PM
 
Location: Fort Myers-Naples-Marco Island, FL
160 posts, read 428,927 times
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Things are much easier today with advances in technology and medicine. There are still major problems but for the average American I would say the quality of life has improved.
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Old 01-05-2010, 11:26 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
2,650 posts, read 5,158,941 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 18Montclair View Post
For women and minorities, its much better now.
Yep........................
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