How far have we actually progressed?


Looking back, our generation can recall just how far a few dollars could take us. I had ‘part time’ work in my senior year in high school. My $0.85 per hour clerking job at Montgomery Wards bought me my class ring at $12.50, (most reasonable one and good quality!); my jacket dress with full skirt, in pale green at approximately $17; shoes from Roberts at $25, which had to be returned for something less, navy blue heels from Mannings, for $20. This was an order by my frugal mother, in spite of my tears. Senior pictures the same. Interestingly, a Krogers job later offered up to $1.25 per hour after six months. The job started at $0.85, checking out groceries which was considered good pay.

With this kind of money, $350 could be saved up for college tuition, as well as $40 per month rent. It was the status quo. No protests. No ‘poor me’ it was business as usual.

Boys went into the military with very little pay. The GI Bill helped many, but not everyone. If not school, everyone went to work. Young men married and provided for families. No complaining. It was our way of life. Everything was of a certain order. Babies came; there was a family.

Modern science has brought a reversal of all that was “normal.” There has to be the house, cars, “toys,” vacations, prosperity, before the family is even thought of. A woman’s worth is many times decided by her resume.

It leaves one wondering how far we have actually progressed. It is a new life as cherished as it was? Has sound technology replaced the art of speaking, singing, or mastering of an instrument?

Can we hang on to our own humanity amidst all the advanced technology? Will there be a “business as usual?”

Mary Snyder

Ford River