We have to be cautious about looking back at the past because we always filter it unconsciously. Ever since writing was invented people have written about how the past was a golden age compared to today. I remember the 1970s. A time when queer-bashing was common, a time when black-skinned people in the USA could be chained and dragged behind cars and the police ignored it. A time when the USA was sending ill-prepared young men to defend colonialism in VietNam so the French could hold on to a bit of their Empire. A time when women were largely restricted to the home, where they made meals for their family and were ready with the 5pm martini when the Man of the House came home. So sure, we’ve lost a few things along the way, but we’ve gained a few things too. Nothing is ever black-or-white.

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Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.

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