*The 80's Child*
Once there was a time when everything was much more meaningful. Song lyrics had a purpose, falling in love was important, kids were important, toys were fun, television was good, and movies were simple.
There was a time when kids could play outside without getting molested, teenage girls could take a walk without being raped, and women could walk to their cars without carrying pepper spray.
Saturday morning television was entertaining, not educational. Children could be children, and wear cute little outfits their parents picked out for them instead of buying the clothes a teenager would wear. Adults could have the news on without having to worry about their children hearing words like "oral sex", "homosexual", and "rapist". A child's life was simple, and they didn't know about things like sex, murder, drugs, and gangs. Their world was full of strawberry shortcake, she-ra, and the Bangles.
Kids could carry a lunchbox to school instead of having to carry money because mum was too busy with her new boyfriend make lunch. A child had 2 parents, not 4. Kids wanted to have a marriage just like their parents, and they idolized their mum and dad. Kids knew who their father was, and didn't have a 25 year old mother when they were 11.
Life was sweet.
Those children grew up.
Now they are having children of their own, they are dying of AIDS, they are suffering from depression, and they are trying to carry the weight of the burden society has thrust upon them. But every once in a while, they can think back to when their whole weekend was focused on getting up early on Saturday morning to watch Superboy, instead of going to a keg party on Saturday night. They smile because they remember how innocent they once were, as they light up their Marlboro Light and drive out of the high school parking lot to pick up their child from daycare.
Written: March 14, 1999