Baby Boomers Coming of Age: How America Has Changed Since 1960s
The U.S. Census Bureau defines a baby boomer as an American born between 1946 and 1964. Others, such as Strauss and Howe define baby boomers as those Americans born between 1943 and 1960.
76 million Americans were born between 1946 and 1962, meaning any American now in their late 40s to mid 60s is a baby boomer. The 76 million baby boomers represent about 42 % of the 1960 population (179 million) and about 25 % of the current U.S. population (309 million). Almost 90 % of the baby boomers are white and an estimated 9 million (about 12 %) are black.
For the older baby boomers, that grew up in America during the 1950s and early 1960s, the United States today is in many respects a completely different world. When those baby boomers were growing up, the pledge of allegiance to the American flag was an accepted and everyday ritual at school and so was Christian prayer.
Their fathers, many of whom were WW II veterans who retained memories of combat, instilled in their baby boomer children a deep and lasting patriotism for America. Many baby boomers attended church services and in their minds there was virtually no "wall of separation between church and state."
There's no doubt that baby boomers in the 1950s and 1960s grew up at a time when patriotism and love for America was the in thing: it was often drilled into their heads by their parents, their teachers, and by the media that America is the greatest country on earth and it can do no wrong.
Indeed, many baby boomers, to this day, believe that America was a better country in the 1950s and early 1960s in spite of the fact that America was a much more segregated and racist society during that time and that "the wall of separation between church and state" was not anywhere as clearly defined as it is today.
When ideology, blind patriotism, religion, racism, and nationalism were combined and posited over and over again into the minds of impressionable baby boomers during their formative years, it left a lasting impression for better or for worse.
The majority of Tea Party members are baby boomers. And most of them still retain the same impressions and perceptions of America as they did when they were kids back in the 1950s and early 1960s. Lasting impressions are tough nuts to crack . . . .
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States