When thinking about the cost of living now and in the '20s and 30's and the historical events then and now, were the "good old days" better or not?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

First, we have to realize that it is unlikely that many people in the United States have ever referred to the 1930s as the “good old days.”  Those were the years of the Great Depression and they were a very unpleasant time in this country and in many others.  The 1920s could conceivably have been called the good old days, but not the 1930s.

As far as cost of living goes, there is probably not that much to distinguish the 1920s from today.  Cars were cheap enough for the average family to afford one.  Housing was more expensive than today.  But the cost of living was much less important than the standard of living.  Today, we have many more appliances and labor saving devices that make our lives easier.  Just one example is the fact that there was no air conditioning in those days. 

As for historical events, I would much rather live now than then.  The 1930s, of course, were the time of the Great Depression.  But even the 1920s weren’t wonderful for everyone.  I, personally, am only half-white.  That fact alone is enough to make me grateful that I live now and not in a decade when the KKK was extremely powerful.

The 1920s were not a terrible time.  However, they were not as good as the present.  I would not look back on them as the “good old days.”