In the 1970s I was lamenting the state of the nation over some crisis du jour when my father said, with irritation, “Quit worrying. Times are always desperate.”
I looked at him in consternation. He continued, “The First World War was terrible on a scale previously unimagined, and a few years later came the Great Depression (in which he grew up, being born in 1920). Then came World War II; the Korean War; the Cold War; the Vietnam War; recessions; race and anti-war riots; a president (Nixon) resigned; and runaway inflation.
“Stop worrying,” he said. “Times are always desperate, and there will always be problems. But we survive.”
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