If you could go back and live in America during the 1970s would you do it? Has the United States become a better place to live over the past 40 years or have things gotten worse? Without a doubt there are arguments that can be made both ways.
For example, who really wants to go back to a time when you actually had to “dial” a phone or rewind a cassette tape in order to find your favorite song? On the other hand, wouldn’t it be nice to live at a time when virtually everyone could find a good job, when television was not so filthy and when you didn’t have to worry about locking your front door at night? Some would say that we have come a long way in 40 years. Others lament how far we have fallen. So what do you think? Read over the 28 points of comparison between 1970s America and America today posted below and then share your opinion by leaving a comment at the end of the article…
1. In the 1970s we had Disco. Today, we have Justin Bieber and Katy Perry.
2. In the 1970s we had Richard Nixon and Jimmy Carter. Today, we have Barack Obama.
3. In the 1970s, Americans fell in love with stupid fads such as mood rings, lava lamps and pet rocks. Today, we have twerking, “planking”, crocs, wedge sneakers and pajama jeans.
4. In 1970, a gallon of gasoline cost 36 cents. Today, the average price for a gallon of gasoline is about $3.27.
5. In the 1970s we still had rotary phones. Today, we have iPhones.
6. In the 1970s, presidents were tapping the phones of their enemies. Today, the government is recording all of our calls. In fact, the NSA intercepts and permanently stores close to 2 billion emails and phone calls every single day.
7. In the 1970s, gum chewing and talking in class were some of the major disciplinary problems in our schools. Today, many of our public schools have been equipped with metal detectors because violence has become so bad.
8. In the 1970s, you could sit down and watch television with your children in the evenings without being too concerned about what they were about to see. Today, not so much.
9. In the early 1970s, Pong was the hottest video game in America. In the late 1970s, Space Invaders took America by storm. Today, the video games have become so incredibly advanced and so extremely entertaining that video game addiction has become a major problem.
10. In the 1970s, most of the products in our stores were made in America and we barely conducted any trade with China. Today, it seems like almost everything we buy has “made in China” stamped on it and our yearly trade deficit with China is now about 300 billion dollars.
11. In 1973, the United States was #2 in GDP per capita. Today, the United States is #13 in GDP per capita.
12. In 1970, the average woman had her first child when she was 21.4 years old. Now the average woman has her first child when she is 25.6 years old.
13. In the 1970s, the “inactivity rate” for men in their prime working years (25 to 54) was less than 6 percent. Today, it is up close to 12 percent.
14. For most of the 1970s, the average duration of unemployment was less than 15 weeks. Today, it is more than 37 weeks.
15. In the 1970s, Star Wars was released. It is still far superior to any movie that has come out so far this year.
16. In the 1970s, redistribution of wealth was considered to be something that “the communists” did. Today, redistribution of wealth is the official policy of the U.S. government.
17. In 1970, about 18 million Americans had manufacturing jobs. Today,about 12 million Americans have manufacturing jobs even though our population has grown far larger.
18. In the 1970s, many Americans regularly left their cars and the front doors of their homes unlocked at night. Today, many Americans live with steel bars on their windows and gun sales are at record highs.
19. Consumer debt in the United States has risen by a whopping 1700% since 1971, and today 46% of all Americans carry a credit card balance from month to month.
20. In the 1970s, most Americans still respected the U.S. Constitution. Today, if you are a “Constitutionalist”, you may get labeled as a potential terrorist by the U.S. government.
21. Back in 1970, the five largest U.S. banks held 17 percent of all U.S. banking industry assets. Today, the five largest U.S. banks hold 52 percent of all U.S. banking industry assets.
22. 40 percent of all workers in the United States actually make less than what a full-time minimum wage worker made back in 1968.
23. In 1977, Elvis was found dead. Today, the entire U.S. middle class is dying.
24. Back in the 1970s, about one out of every 50 Americans was on food stamps. Today, about one out of every 6 Americans is on food stamps.
25. In 1979, Sony introduced the Walkman. When you wanted to listen to a particular song, you had to rewind your tape to find it. Today, everyone has iPods and it takes just seconds to sort through thousands of songs.
26. In the 1970s, the United States loaned more money to the rest of the world than anybody else. Today, the United States owes more money to the rest of the world than anybody else.
27. In 1970, the U.S. national debt was about 371 billion dollars. Today, it is more than 46 times larger.
28. In the 1970s, hippies were smoking dope, attending rock festivals and singing protest songs. Today, they are running the U.S. government.
What would you add to this list? Please feel free to share your thoughts by posting a comment below…