… just not necessarily mine:
One can only hit the high spots of such an undertaking on an internet comment thread. Howsomever, think of how the country was before the sixties, the counter culture, the sexual revolution, etc. That’s a start.
My descriptions are how things were generally before the war against traditional American culture progressed as much as it has today. Of course there were exceptions to everything, but in the past, they were much fewer, and carried much less weight.
Christianity was given outward respect by people, by the popular culture, by government and education, etc. God and Jesus were not ridiculed and mocked by leftists and/or hedonists, as is common place today. (Think “Piss Christ” or the virgin Mary splattered n elephant dung.) Christians and the clergy were given basically positive portrayals in movies and television.
Schools taught math, grammar/spelling/composition for the purpose of effective communication, science, history, etc.(not “historiography” — i.e., telling people what to think about history) and nonsense “courses” like studying comic books, were almost nonexistent. The pseudo-social science of “women’s studies” and “white studies” did not exist. Schools were for learning, not for social experimentation. .
Marriage/family = man/husband/father, woman/wife/mother, and children. Men were breadwinners, women homemakers. Sometimes women worked outside the home to help their husbands, but men were the head of the household. Heterosexuality was understood to be normal and healthy; homosexuality was not celebrated. Unmarried couples did not shack up, or hook up in great numbers. Most movies and books were clean; if they dealt with questionable subjects, they were low key and more tasteful about it than today. Erotica and soft-core porn were not considered part of the romance genre in books or movies.
All these and more traditional characteristics are what the left has railed against for generations.
After WWII, US GIs came home and, often using technology discovered and/or invented during the war, built a culture that was the envy of the world. With an updated version of America’s pioneer spirit, they invented the suburban subdivision (see Levittown) of three-bedroom ranches and neighborhood shopping centers, and freeways into the cities, where the breadwinners drove to work. In some areas like the northeast, they took trains into the cities, but outside the large urban areas, the automobile came into its own and made us a highly mobile culture.
I think the San Fernando Valley in California as a microcosm of the US after the war. The economy was booming, people had jobs and money, there was a lot of optimism for the future reflected in everything from popular music to fashion to architecture to decor. That’s why they were called the Fabulous Fifties.
They were followed by the Sick Sixties. Already, there was a segment, an element — people who hated America for being too white, too successful, too rich, too smug, too optimistic and too happy. And they set out to change that.
The decline of our culture isn’t entirely due to efforts of the left to tear down. In some measure, California was a victim of its own attractiveness, enticing millions of people to follow Route 66 to the Santa Monica pier, and then settle in and around Los Angeles, and other places, including the Central Valley and points north.
But an awful lot of our culture has been specifically targeted by leftists, many of whom don’t seem to really care about blacks and hispanics; they just hate whites (and most of them are white, go figure). They don’t really care about women, they just hate men. They don’t really care about homosexuals, they just hate heterosexuals.
Does this give you a better idea of my concept of American culture? A simpler way to say it might be to look at what the left is targeting for eradication or at least irrelevance. Very likely, it is an element of traditional American culture.