I don’t know if all of us older folks do this. I can only think it does. There’s a page on Face Book that’s titled “I Farmed Tobacco as A Child”. It’s titled to hit a particular demographic of older folks, but I would think the underlying principle I’ll present runs through all older generations of Americans. These folks, including myself are from this genre’ of life.
What I’m looking at in the posts of this page is this. We all seem to long for those days again when things were much simpler. Government invading every corner of our lives was not so much of a problem. It was more of a distant body that didn’t completely filter down to the grassroots level of life. We worked the ground for our income and food. We raised hogs and hunted deer and squirrel for our food among other things. We had dozens of chickens for eggs and a pan to fry them in on occasion. Our gardens were large enough to make it necessary to can the vegetables and store the onions and potatoes in a cool dry place. Many evenings during the summer we sat in the living room around a black and white Zenith TV with pliers sitting on top to change the channels. All three of them to be exact. While sitting there our minds were divided between what was on while shelling beans or peas and snapping string beans. Come fall we had tomatoes, beans, peas, corn potatoes and onions stored away for winter. Mom would make pickles too, but that isn’t in my diet I have to say. I like fresh cucumber only. Okra was something we didn’t can. We ate most of them up as quick at they came off from the garden. Killin’ hogs was a family event. And yes, we did something with everything but the squeal. I remember seeing my dad eat hog brains scrambled into eggs. I also remember taking cuts of meat to a local grocery where they had a meat grinder and they let us grind it into sausage. We seasoned our own. When we brought it home we’d freeze that much at least, but I do remember the old smoke house and pork barrel. I remember seeing those hams and shoulders hanging there inside and fishing around in the barrel for a slab of bacon or fat back. There was no dependence on the government for anything. Subsistence was totally on us and we were very good at it. We never went hungry.
We did have our reality, which meant times when week after week we ate vegetables for our meals on week days. Collards, butterbeans, black-eyed peas with dumplings and potatoes were the staple on many nights. Meat was a weekend affair. I would imagine that’s why the “gospel bird” got its name for Sunday dinner when the preacher came to eat with us. Chicken was a wonderful thing to have on the table. My dad’s only fetish was a few Saturday evenings mom would get a T-bone steak for him, which I salivated over just for the bone if I could have had it. No, it wasn’t that bad. But we got home-made soup with a little bit of hamburger thrown in. I didn’t care. Didn’t even know we were poor dirt farmers. I just thought that was the way it was. I had no complaints.
The underlying principle here if you haven’t gotten it yet is that most Americans knew how to survive back then. This was the way it was at least till 1960’s. Then the hippie revolution hit and making more money became the thing across the broad range of people. Some tuned out as was said and some wanted the almighty dollar. Civil rights became a huge issue and I was witness to the assassination of a president, presidential hopeful and the only civil rights leader I grew to appreciate. All of these in just that one decade.
Inflation began to rear its ugly head in the sixties. For just a basic look, gas and cigarettes in the fifties and sixties was something like 28 cents a gallon and less than that for a pack of cigarettes. I don’t have to tell you what that is now. Somewhere during the seventies I began to realize that raising the minimum wage, salary increases, from my perspective, was part of a cycle that was beginning to emerge. If we got what we wanted in money it only meant the producers of goods would have to increase their prices because they had to pay workers more, so it got passed on to the consumers. The feeding frenzy of increased salaries and increased cost of goods has not stopped. Everyone will have a different view I suppose, but what if we had maintained a livable salary based on costs at the time, would product costs gone up? If so, I dare say not so dramatically as they have to say the least.
Housing in the fifties would get you a decent size home for a family for less than ten thousand dollars. I watch HGTV now and people spend hundreds of thousands of dollars for the average home now. How do they pay for it? With money from jobs that pay extraordinarily good can be the only answer. I don’t begrudge them. I don’t want a big house. I just want to live a comfortable life with people being more valuable to me than the material things others want.
Churches have become prideful in the number of people they can garner into a mega-sized buildings and then staff it with highly paid “servants” to watch after these swarms of people. I’m better off in a small church where I know the people and they know me. Large churches can be breeding grounds for greed and all sorts of other things, although I have to say you don’t have to have a large church for that to be so. I’ve known a small church were given time the administrator embezzled a quarter million dollars. We all know what happened to Jim Bakker and Jimmy Swaggart. I’m not going to say I’m free of sin, but for whom much is given, much is required. I’ve made my mistakes and I’ve paid for them. I figure these men have too and if they want to continue to minister that’s between them and God. It’s the thoughts of the masses about them that will forever scar them from the pinnacle they once stood upon.
Civil rights has always been an issue. Let’s not confine it to America. It’s a world issue. Blacks in Africa sold their own people off to slavery and many ended up here. Whites abused the blacks and built and economy in the U.S. off of their backs in the 1800’s. If any are still feeling the oppression it’s not all from the white race. It’s a share and share alike kind of abuse. The majority of people I know want better for themselves and others, while a few still like to preach oppression. If we all lay down our swords and work toward a common goal of unity the past issues will cease to exist.
Through the eighties and nineties we saw a progression of division and on into the new millennium. The divide now has been spread across all people. Now it’s more than just racial divides. It’s class against class of people whether white, black or otherwise. There is no cohesion among the people of this country and it’s systematically being torn apart by a socialist leadership that either by the people or a hint of fraudulent sleight of hand was voted into office. We can’t really blame the leadership first. First we have to blame ourselves for relinquishing our patriotism for self-loathing greed. We now have gone from self-reliance to entitlement of everything everyone else has. This didn’t just start with this present administration. It’s been working up through the last four decades at least. This present administration can be more open to its blatant destruction because over these decades we’ve been numbed to it so that we are more receptive to accepting it and believing it as a way of life.
Israel was much the same way in its years of being a nation. They’d stray away from God and He would allow for their captivity to Babylon for instance. They would suffer from their own lack of judgment until someone of their people proclaimed their sin and all turned and then God would return them to their land. It even came to the point God scattered them all over the earth and their land was gone and the Nazi’s tried to abolish the earth of their very existence. But with all that God heard their cry and returned them to their land. They are a tough, resilient people now since coming back to their land. They know how to deal with the Arab nations, because they know how they think. Americans have no idea how to do this. We shouldn’t be trying to shore up peace there with direct involvement, but I’m quite sure if we give the nation of Israel the ammunition they need, they can demolish the issues the Arab nations devise upon them.
But for Americans, we have an open border to our south and it will be a player in our demise. Mark my words. We are headed towards an internal war on our own ground in the not too distant future. These people coming into our nation unbridled by a blind-eyed administration are here for a reason and it isn’t for a better life in America. It’s to take over. Drug cartels are using children as a means to get in. They are their front. Central Americans and even terrorists are coming over our own border right now and our administration is busing them around the nation and dropping them off in strategic spots. They’ve even hinted at dropping some off in Hawaii. This isn’t some conspiracy theory. Look around at the news folks. It’s happening right now. This day.
I’m a sane enough person to recognize the demise of morality in our nation and it will cause the death of one of the most powerful nations ever on the face of this earth. Are you ready or are you willing to take the bull by the horns and take America back?
I love my country. I love what it stood for. I am a patriot. I will defend it against all enemies without and more importantly now from within.