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  • Writer's pictureDave Picozzi

Looking Back to Look Forward: Getting Your Fair Slice of the American Pie

The last few years have concerned me about our next generation of adults getting their fair slice of American pie. It got me thinking back to what made me feel optimistic about my future growing up in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, and what our own communities can now do to get that feeling back. I'm applying those experiences to address modern day issues and offer free programs below.

Let’s look back on some tangible events that gave my generation hope:

  • Cultural Flourishing: Music, art, and literature exploded with diversity and expression, challenging norms and reflecting on a changing society.

  • Technological Advancements: From being the first to land on the moon to the rise of personal computers, American ingenuity led the world in scientific and technological breakthroughs.

  • Economic Boom: The post-war economic boom expanded the middle class, offering opportunities and upward mobility for many. This prosperity fueled innovation and a vibrant consumer culture.

  • Community Socialization: As kids, we stayed outside with friends until dark. As young adults in the workforce, we played sports together, went on weekend trips, and joined senior managers for drinks after work to have open discussions and build relationships. With limited home technology and no cell phones, most of our activities were in-person.

  • Social Empowerment: The landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965 dismantled segregation, empowering Black Americans and igniting a fight for equality that continues today. Similarly, the feminist movement secured voting rights, reproductive rights, and equal pay initiatives, paving the way for greater female participation in society and the workforce.

However, nostalgia alone won't solve America's current challenges. By acknowledging issues plaguing the next generation, we can create community solutions to move forward.

Young adults optimistic about their future

Community Action: Building a Better Future

Instead of yearning for the past, let's focus on building a better present and future. Here's how communities can contribute:

  • Invest in Education: A well-educated community is essential for progress. Support quality education for all, fostering critical thinking and preparing future generations for success.

  • Promote Economic Opportunity: Let’s use practical education, realistic career planning, networking, mentoring, and financial planning strategies (cost avoidance, savings, investing) to teach people how to improve their future. This is in addition to advocating for policies that create jobs, raise wages, and offer affordable housing to ensure the next generation has a chance to thrive.

  • Restore In-Person Socialization: Come with us for hiking, biking, culture, arts, walking tours and adventures to socialize and make new friends in person. There’s something magical about getting outside and being less tethered to social media.

  • Protect the Environment: Promote healthy, sustainable, and livable practices within our communities where we have an influential voice.

  • Fight for Equality: Continue to support social justice (middle-class families, women, minorities) to dismantle barriers and ensure equal opportunity for all. By celebrating the richness of our diverse communities, fostering inclusion, and understanding across cultures & backgrounds, we can all share in the economic boom experienced in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s.

See which of our programs (Education, Economic Empowerment, Health & Fitness) are the right fit to improve your future. Then, select ‘Save Me a Seat!’ to contact us.

By taking action as a participant, volunteer, or donor, you can experience the same feeling of optimism I did growing up. Click here to Get Involved!

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