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Common Practices From the Groovy Era That Would NEVER “Fly” Today!

Culture | October 22, 2018

According to American society’s standards of today, if you were born during or before the groovy era, you just might be lucky to be alive! The rite of passage, common sense, being held accountable for your actions and taking your lumps has been replaced by political correctness, activists and lawsuits.

Back in the groovy era, kids were not treated as delicate, little flowers. Didn't your parents ever tell you that, “life isn’t fair?”

Yes… children were valued as family members during the groovy era, but they were not necessarily given any breaks in life just because, “it wasn’t fair!” Children left the house, daily, without cell phones, thereby leaving them no way to call home or to receive a call from home without a dime in their pocket. Kids today, never got the, “life isn’t fair,” memo.

Our society has veered so far off course that it is now considered an inherent right for a citizen of the United States to be provided with a cell phone if they “can’t” afford it. 

Hair care has usually always been of utmost importance to many people… both men and women. Now we have hair care products like flat irons to assist in taming unruly, curly hair. Back in the day, an actual clothes iron was used to straighten hair! Make no mistake, though… it sometimes ended in tragedy but was nevertheless considered a risk worth taking!

Child safety seats were OPTIONAL in back in the groovy era!

More often than not, children were unrestrained while riding in cars prior to the early 1990’s. Any attempt at a child “safety” seat was mainly for the convenience of the driver. People actually allowed their children to ride in rear facing seats of the car meaning that they would take the worst of the impact in a rear-end collision.

Actress and sex symbol, Bridgette Bardot

Smoking was considered to be hip and groovy, not to mention a sexy vice back in the day.

Smoking cigarettes was a typically a socially accepted, if not expected, normal, social activity back in the groovy days. Throughout the groovy era, and even prior, cigarette and cigar smokers enjoyed their vice of choice everywhere and anywhere. Smoking was considered acceptable. Smokers were able to light up everywhere including at work, at the grocery store, on airplanes and even at the doctor’s office. These days, if you want to smoke, you are expected to isolate yourself to do so. Now, many people go outside, even when they are at their own homes to “enjoy” a smoke. Instead of being the majority… now smokers are considered to be the minority.

Asbestos was an approved, popular and commonly used building material!

Prior to the discovery of the dangers of asbestos, many people were exposed to this dangerous material. After years of use, it was discovered to have caused many heath issues including lung disease. Everyone from hardworking men and women, trying to support their families, to their children in school as well as many unassuming consumers in public venues were exposed to this dangerous substance.  

Drinking and driving? No problem… 

DUI was not necessarily a legal issue back in the groovy era. People were free to enjoy their alcohol and get behind the wheel of the car at their own discretion. Fast forward to the 60’s and 70’s when many were overindulging in alcohol and psychedelic drugs. People who opposed these vices began to take notice of the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol and other substances. Even then, many states didn’t adopt the DUI laws until much later.

Remember the guns kids played with in the groovy era and before?  "Caps," which were the ammo for toy guns, actually contained small amounts of real explosives!

Gunpowder for Christmas?

Toy guns, including “cap” guns were the toy of choice for many young boys back in the day. Whether is was because they idolized cowboys or policemen, toy guns were definitely very popular among young boys. Cap gun "ammo" employed small amounts of real explosive materials that would make a “bang” as well as produce small amounts of real smoke when fired. While little girls were expected to play with baby dolls and kitchen sets, it was very common for little boys to put on their cowboy hats and play cops and robbers. If a boy ran out of ammo… no worries because since the gun itself was made out of steel, it could be used as a "blunt object" to foil the enemy. Make no mistake, though… girls enjoyed them too; it was just not considered to be feminine.  

Physical fitness was once a leisurely activity. Back in the groovy era, all a person had to do was stand still and let the state-of-the-art exercise equipment do all the work… just stand there and smile and the pounds melted away!

Demonstration Against Corporal Punishment - Schoolchildren Demonstrating In Hyde Park (Photo by © Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)

Corporal punishment in schools was commonplace; and not just for the little kids.

Unlike today, if a child misbehaved years ago, he/she was subject to being corrected by any adult in their presence. It wasn’t uncommon for a child to be “spanked” by not only their parents, but also by their neighbors, clergy, teachers and any other adult who felt they needed correction. “Spanking” was done by hand and any other instrument that was handy. NOT now, folks… this type of correction today would result in a lawsuit.

As time marches on and evolves, so do our social practices. What seemed normal back in the day seems odd to some now. In the future… who knows? Maybe what we think of as common sense now will be refuted and mocked. 

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Rebeka Knott

Writer

Rebeka grew up in the 1960’s & 1970’s and has always subscribed to the theory that a positive attitude will take you far! She is a wife and mother of 3 with a fun-loving spirit, believing that family and relationships are invaluable.