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  1. #1
    Unversed Veevee's Avatar
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    Default Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    I've been thinking about this recently ... at least in my country people keep saying that everything was better - back then". Back then usually refers to their youth because this is usually voiced by old men and women who rant about how reckless the youth and what a rotten place the world has become to be. I've gotten used to that as old people's rant but in the recent years I noticed that a lot more people say this who are just in the middle of their twenties or at the beginning of their thirties. They complain about today's youth being unfriendly and much less polite than themselves at that time, the world is so much more violent and sick, less money, less time, less everything. My facebook wall is flooded with posts who my friends liked that go somewhere along the lines like "oh, do you remember, the 90's when we still put a pencil into a cassette to rewind it, good ol' times" and when I scroll to the comment section people do no nothing but rant about how times have changed to the worse.

    So, back to my original question, what do you think about this? Has the world really become a worse place than "back then" (whenever that was) or is this kind of rant just like Nostalgia implemented in human nature and might therefore reappear with every generation? How do you feel about the world today when you compare it to the world you experienced in your childhood?

    Personally, I tend to equalize the pros and cons of everything, like the spreading of technology. It's true, people should probably spend less time in front of some screen, social media or whatever because they're flooded with information that they don't actually need but suddenly feel dependant on ("wait a sec, I'll check my facebook - did you know that Katie has a boyfriend now?"). On the other hand it's so much easier to stay in touch with people wherever they are without worrying about the cost of a call, I don't have to drive 40 minutes to my university to see that class is cancelled (well, I still have to because I never check it online, but I could spare me that). I don't think that much about people's behaviour has changed, at least not only one way, people have become much more accepting of things (like gender and race equality and stuff like that) but maybe they also have become more violent, especially in voicing their opinions and insulting people online. About money and time, it's a given thing that I had less money and more time when I was a kid, that honestly doesn't surprise me.
    That's it from my side, I'm curious to hear what you have to say on that matter.
       

  2. #2
    whatever Muke's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    I'm too young to even actually participate in this kind of discussion and I'm sorry that this is such a short respond to a really good thread, but I feel like most of that is simply because many people don't accept change (or just don't like it). I do think it's kind of like having nostalgia goggles.

  3. #3
    Bronze Member Tartarus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    Well, currently the world seems to be on the verge of something pretty dark what with Trump, Farage, the environment irreparably changing in ways that will affect everyone, etc. But as far as on a small scope? No, I don't think people are any different than they ever were. The truth is that the world has always been full of evil and always will be (in this life).

    I had written something else about that whole "back then" phrase that I thought was funny, but I'm not sure others would enjoy so I deleted it. :P

  4. #4
    Unversed Soldier's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    Gonna have to side with the old people on this one, today's youth are very disrespectful. Raising them on ipads and exposing them to the internet is NOT a good thing. So yeah, I'll lean towards the fact that yesteryear was better.

  5. #5
    Spear of Justice! Undyne's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    Nah, I don't think things were much better back then. Things were certainly different depending on what we count as 'back then' when we think back to the past. However, I do believe there was as much good and bad back then as there is now. Some generations more bad than others. I do prefer the present because, I like being an adult way better than I do as a kid. I like the way some things are now compared to back then, but I don't wish to go back to the past by any means necessary.

    Being born in the 90's, I let the adults handle all of the adult stuff because, I didn't care about it. I preferred going outside and playing with the neighborhood kids. Instead of listening to the news about kidnappings, politics, and MySpace with it's growing popularity that lead to dangerous chat rooms and sexual predators/stalkers creeping on there. I was pretty much unaware of the world around me because, I was a kid for starters and I didn't have a smart phone or a laptop to communicate with. There was only the school and the local park to make friends. When I moved across states, I used to have to use the mail to keep in touch with a friend. Go figure. It's pretty funny how quickly the mail became obsolete in that way. Plus there was the telephone, but it could only be used sparingly because it cost money; which reminds me of my first time playing Kingdom Hearts and trying to play it together with a friend by doing the same thing he did by talking about it on the phone. And the internet we had was Dell and it was a piece of crap. Nowadays, I have a iPod and laptop to keep in touch with friends and family. The internet and phone have come a long ways from how crappy it used to be. If I want to know what's happening around the world, I have the information at my fingertips.

    As for kids being polite; The only example I can think of is being told not to use swear words and make certain hand gestures. It was considered taboo among kids in the 90's except for the teenagers that were older than us tossing around swear words and flipping people off that got in trouble. Again, how times have changed because, my own family isn't afraid to use swear words or flip one another off behind another persons back. It's the new normal. Whereas for me, I rarely use swear words aloud unless I hurt myself. Online it's a whole other story.

    As for school; There'll always be bullying. That's never changed. Kids will always be cruel to one another. I got bullied as a kid both on and off the playground. However being bullied in the 90's wasn't as big of a deal back then because, a lot of it was kept under control and kids didn't have as much of an attention span. And again, no cell phones or smart phones back then to spread word about it. If kids are bullied now, it's a big deal because, parents will sue over it. The school system is pretty messed up in the states. We used to hold kids back a grade when they struggled, and now, kids get passed regardless of what they're grade is in high school and middle school because, parents get upset about it. And smart kids are also screwed over because of the dumb kids; making things fair instead of trying to help the dumb kids get better. (When I say dumb kids, I mean the ones that don't do their home work and slack off.) There's a lot of teachers who also don't care because, they're more concerned about their pay checks. This is one of the more major things to of changed between now and back then in the 90's. And Max brought up a solid point about it too. However, I don't want to get more into it because, I don't have the energy for it right now.

    Medicine wise; when I was growing up my grandma used to smoke. Smoking was a huge thing despite how unhealthy it was for you. There were a lot more commercials about it. Public places would be covered in cigarette butts, including restaurants, hotels, and etc. Nowadays, it's almost non-existent because smoking is banned from most places. Which is a huge improvement in my eyes. I don't know how I tolerated it as a kid.

    I could go on about social media and politics being a necessary evil in the world but, I get too opinionated about it. And I honestly don't care about this topic in particular when it truly comes down to it. Which is why I didn't keep the original post I had made because, I went really overboard. And I feel like I may of accidentally hurt a few friends? However, I do care that racism is acknowledge and there's more acceptance to whatever sexuality we happen to identify with.

    The highlights of my childhood was Sailor Moon and Toonami. I've never seen a female super hero before. And I didn't count Daphne or Velma as superheroes from Scooby Doo. I like the majority of cartoons from back then, even if they were a bit on the violent side. However, I think the cartoons were more subtle about it than they're given credit for. In comparison to today's cartoons, I hate Spongebob with a passion; I thought the adult jokes were stupid, and it made me lose brain cells. (I'm aware it was originally meant for the adults before they made it for kids. Sorry if this is upsetting to anyone, but I really don't like Spongebob. xD) However, there are some really great cartoons now. Such as Gravity Falls and Avatar the Last Airbender. I'll always have a fondness for cartoons regardless of when they were made. Same for video games. Playing all of the original Sims games until Sims 2 used to drive my parents nuts because, they thought it was a bad influence on kids; we were playing god. Didn't stop me from playing it. lol. I suppose this could turn into a topic on what's too violent for kids to be watching and playing. But this post has gotten long enough as it is.

    In the end, I believe it's our actions that we pass on to kids in the future that matter. We can't change our past mistakes; we simply have to live with them. And what lessons we learn to better ourselves now and in the future. There's no harm in feeling nostalgia for the past, but it's better to see what's in front of us instead of looking the other way.
    Last edited by Cinder; October 15, 2017 at 06:10 AM. Reason: A lot calmer opinion about things.

  6. #6
    Hell yeah BlackOsprey's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    No, not really. Each generation always has its own set of problems and solving them just causes new kinds of issues to come up and take their place, and a good deal of them are created from resolved past problems. Used to be that people died from the most trivial illnesses or wounds by today's standards. Our technology and medicine nowadays has nearly wiped out a lot of deadly diseases and has made it much more difficult to die from a minor injury. Seems great. Less death always seems better. But now we have to deal with the consequences... a population explosion, and all the issues that brings.

    So no. "Back then" wasn't better. It was just different. And old folks have probably been complaining about the young ones for as long as communication has existed.
    Last edited by BlackOsprey; October 13, 2017 at 01:39 AM.

  7. #7
    Max
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    Vanilla Sky Crawler Max's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    There's good and bad to both, but they are definitely different.

    The school system today compared to the '90s even had a lot of differences. My old school alone, I remember reading books and then taking tests with my pen and paper. One of the teachers I kept contact with posted a picture to social media showing off his first class of students that had their books and tests entirely on a tablet. I commented that I prefer physical books and tests, to which he responded "Get with the times." I don't know, maybe kids today so prefer that, but I definitely don't. That's a minor change at that as well.

    And then the games, the cartoons, man I just had a conversation with someone about this the other day, animation in general just seemed so much better back then. I know I may struggle to see through the nostalgia goggles, but Hey Arnold, Doug, Invader Zim, Pokemon Indigo-Johto League, Dragon Ball, and a million more things were just so good back then. One of the few cartoons of this generation I genuinely and consistently enjoy is Adventure Time, so I know these quality cartoons can still be made. Heck, a lot of them are even making comebacks.

    Speaking of cartoons, Mickey Mouse. Old school Mickey cartoons consisted of 5-10 minute little "sketches" or whatever if you will, it was episodic and told such memorable tales. I remember the black and white episode where Mickey, Donald, and Goofy were hunting ghosts (an episode before my time even), absolutely epic. Mickey Mouse today has turned into Mickey Mouse Club House. There was nothing wrong with those old Mickey episodes and the old formula, enjoyable for all ages. Now Mickey Mouse Club House is another dumbed down Nick Jr. esque show that just doesn't challenge a kid's intelligence in nearly the same way. Mickey went from something where kids from my generation got excited to see him in a game with Cloud, but kids from today's generation will feel they've outgrown him by age 12 because he's so geared towards toddlers now.

    I could rant and rave and ramble about a million other subjects or even the same subjects. I didn't mention nearly as many good things about today, such as where we've come internet and technology-wise, but that's too deep for me right now, especially considering those exact things are a double edged sword as far as which generation is best. If I had to choose though, I'm super glad I was born when I was.
    Last edited by Max; October 13, 2017 at 02:45 PM.

  8. #8
    literal son of a bitch Chuman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    society has always adopted a mindset that “the good ol days” are better simply because we feel the need to romanticize the days gone by. we desire what we can’t have, and the past is something forever out of reach. you had a different point of view back then and felt different things, who wouldn’t want to go back to a time when they could watch cartoons all morning and sleep in? try doing that now and either you can’t or it just isn’t the same.

  9. #9
    Keyblade Master Harmonie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    Being a part of a few "less privileged" groups, I don't look upon the past too fondly. I just can't. Of course, I love studying history, I love the music from the 1960s/70s and also classical music going all of the way back to ancient times, but I can't talk about the "good ol' days". Going back to the eras with my favorite composers, I would not even be allowed to play the instruments I love. Women only really found a place in music performance with keyboard instruments, even then that was expected to happen at home, not professionally. Woodwind instruments were considered completely uncouth for women. Even in places where girls were taught them (the orphanage that Vivaldi worked at, for example), it was done behind a curtain, and these girls were only taught to play these instruments in the interest of making them appealing to men. Ew.

    You think this is all ancient history? It's not. IIRC, the Vienna Philharmonic did not allow women in their orchestra until get this - the late 1990s. Well into my lifetime.

    I know music is a narrow topic, here. There is a lot worse things. The reason I bring it up is because I have romanticized the past because of music, and so that's a big deal for me.

    When people talk about "the good ol' days", it very often not only means a time that was not nice to people like me and other groups that have been othered, but they're specifically wanting those times back for that very reason. You think I'm wrong, but just look at the state of the USA right now. Just look at it. It is so sad. A lot of these people may not want to deprive women of the ability to be musicians (but... Looking at the excuses used to keep women out of orchestras by men "She is distracting me!", it's the same old BS we here from some men nowadays), but they most certainly want strict gender roles, Christianity ruling the government, LGBT rights trampled all over, people of different religions kept out, etc., etc.

    Even if we're just talking about the "good ol' days" (but we can't completely separate these concepts) before the internet and cell phones when people played outside and talked to each other, that's dumb. People use the internet and cell phones to talk to each other. I've really been allowed to express myself better because I have the internet.

    Other general complaints like "people have no manners nowadays", I think that needs to have proof to be backed up. I think people have always been this way, but we are bound to end up in a mindset that things weren't always this way and that people are getting worse. In reality, this isn't likely the case, it's just our bias.

  10. #10
    Unversed Veevee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackOsprey View Post
    No, not really. Each generation always has its own set of problems and solving them just causes new kinds of issues to come up and take their place, and a good deal of them are created from resolved past problems. Used to be that people died from the most trivial illnesses or wounds by today's standards. Our technology and medicine nowadays has nearly wiped out a lot of deadly diseases and has made it much more difficult to die from a minor injury. Seems great. Less death always seems better. But now we have to deal with the consequences... a population explosion, and all the issues that brings.

    So no. "Back then" wasn't better. It was just different. And old folks have probably been complaining about the young ones for as long as communication has existed.
    Interesting thought, I've never really thought about it that way that one solved problem leads into one another. I mean, I did but I never saw it as a kind of chain, more like a huge amount of construction sites that every nation decides to work on or not.
    This reminds me of a conversation I had with a friend of mine a few years ago in which she claimed that the population explosion is not a natural thing and should never have existed in the first place. That said, she added that people should just "let nature do its work" and not fight against it by inventing things that help us in our daily lives and trying to prevent life-threatening danger like diseases. Furthermore, she told me how "back then" people who couldn't hear just got eaten or killed by something someday and that was just how it was supposed to be. That was life.
    As a person who is dependant on glasses I've rarely been that insulted so I told her that and added how she had just kinda wished that I would die someday. While looking a bit guilty, she didn't exactly neglect it but added it wasn't anything on a personal level. It still really shocked me, this was one of the moments that change people you thought you knew completely - I've thought about her opinion a lot of times. Today I can accept it, but I can't agree - while it was surely meant that way by nature, the ability to evolve was also a thing given by nature so I think this is about equal. Claiming that someone kinda deserves to die because he was unlucky enough to be born under different circumstances than someone else is really harsh and despiseful imo, so I will never agree on that. It's just not fair.

    @Muke: I'm not really that old either but that's part of the reason why I'm thinking about this. Because people my age already start to talk about "back then" and how it all was better x years ago, so I think everyone who has already compared a time in the past to the present day is "authorized" to participate. :)

    @Max: I agree with what you said, but I tend to differ a bit about the cartoons. I also loved the cartoons you mentioned but there were also a lot of cartoons I wouldn't dare to show to a kid today, e.g. Tom and Jerry which just glorifies violence over the top and sells it as fun. I remember the old cartoons having a lot of slapstick, like when one character hits another character for the purpose of a laugh which is, if you really think about it, not exactly commendable. Today's shows seem dumber to me too but they are being revised more carefully so that they don't contain much violence or sexual innuendos (Pokemon: Brock as a teenager hitting on every woman; early Dragonball episodes where Bulma offered Muten Roshi to touch her in an inappropriate way to get his Dragonball; the whole Shin Chan series). Back then it didn't bother me much because I didn't really understand most of what was going on but I still don't think that the mentioned examples are something children should see. Again, everything has its pros and cons.

    @Harmonie: Seeing the return of racism and gender discrimination always makes me wonder about the why. I get that people say and do nasty things to "strangers" because they think they can protect their belongings that way. As a witness of the refugee "crisis" in Germany I heard a lot of people say that they simply wanted to "protect" what they have while not being able to see that there is no real new threat out there. What they did was to deny change in general, humanity tends to do that because it's easier that way but likes to forget that we can't just go and deny change and everything will work out somehow. Reminiscing the times when white men were the only real power on the world and wishing those times back might be great for some people but it won't work out in the long run. It just won't and the wishful people will hit the ground harder than they might expect, so it's probably smarter to prepare for change sooner than later.

  11. #11
    A
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    Super Militant A's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    Nothing was "better" back then in fact society was a lot more abrasive and brutal, people didn't have smart phones and a means of recording everything 24/7 20+ years ago.

  12. #12
    XxDarkness_Shadowmaster69 xX VoidGear.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    Sure, everything was better when we died at ~40 due to hunger or the smallest illnesses. <3

    Honestly a lot of people talking like that just do so because we tend to remember the "good memories" and compare them to the singular problem we have in mind at that point. Yes, theres flawed things nowadays, but theres also a lot that has changed for the better.

    So nah, I'd say things are relatively okay.

  13. #13
    一匹狼 ROXAS_32's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    This is tricky.. but in reality every generation can say that things were better than the generation before... In some cases it things probably were better, in others they aren't.

    The real problem is when nothing is learned from the generation before and we start repeating problems or we start taking multiple steps backwards.

    The Great Divider, Our Celebrity and Chief, #45... IMO is taking USA into a dark place. Its only a matter of time before we start feeling the negative effects of his actions.

  14. #14
    Keyblade Master Peace's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    [old coot voice] Back in my day, we had to hunt and forage for our food. None of this money & grocery store bullshit! And find shelter, we either had to find a cave and pray there are no tigers or bears in it or make a house ourselves. And if I wanted to threaten the pope, I'd use a carrier pigeon. [/old coot voice]

    Real talk, from a pragmatic stand point, life is better than ever. People are living longer. We're combating disease better. We have access to technology we only dreamed of when we were kids. And human kind will keep making it better until we eventually kill each other off.

    Do I have complaints? Of course I do! Everyone does!

    Do I think life was better when I was a kid and didn't have to pay bills? Eh.

    I think the reason the world seems like shit to people in their twenties or thirties because we have more access to information. We know of more injustices going on in the world when years ago we were ignorant of these truths.

    My personal opinion on what we can do is pass the lessons we learned down to others. People need to live in the world we have today instead of dwelling on or trying to bring back the past in the present. I could mention certain people in power trying to do the latter, but they've been mentioned already.

    I apologize if this seems all over the place.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Do you think everything was better "back then"?

    No. Not in any way, for me. Not thinking back at my childhood, not thinking back 50 years, not even hundreds of years. Just no. I'm happier now than I ever was a kid, and I certainly don't feel like living in a society where I'm forced to marry some old ugly dude and take abuse all my life. Don't really feel like being treated like shit, possibly killed, for not being a straight white male. That's not to say it doesn't still happen in this day and age, but things have gotten a lot better in most parts of the world, so why the hell would I ever want to go back to the times where it was even worse? People are always going to be shitty no matter what time, but all in all, environment things are finally moving along, clean energy is a thing, we know so much more cool space stuff, and are finally starting to realize that maybe we don't have to kill each other over every single little difference.

    Yeah no, if anything I think things will be better in the future, not the past.

 

 
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