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The Feeling of Security

Updated on March 30, 2018

About Fifty Years Ago

Riding in the back of a pickup truck!

Man I thought that was so cool!

It was pretty common back then, you know?

So was hitchhiking. We used to hitchhike home from high school back in the 60’s. Never thought a thing about it. Our parents were just happy we didn’t have to walk the five miles . . . “find your own way home, Bill, we both have to work today” . . . those were words I heard from my parents quite often during my teen years. And so school would let out, we would walk down to Union Avenue, stick our thumbs out, and get a ride home from a complete stranger.

The feeling of security!

Not a care in the world in 1960
Not a care in the world in 1960 | Source

Bike Rides

I was probably around ten years old when my parents bought me an English Racer bicycle. Hot stuff, folks, I gotta tell ya, I felt pretty cool riding that bad boy around town and yes, I do mean around town. I grew up in Tacoma, Washington, which at that time was a city of about 120,000 people. Good sized city, for sure, and it was quite common for me and my friends to put some snacks in a bag, put the bag in the bike saddle bags, and go for long rides around town, rides of ten, fifteen miles, gone several hours for sure, and we did this when we were not yet teens. Our only orders from our parents: be careful and be back before dark! We had no cell phones, no way to check in, no backup plan in case something went wrong . . . just be careful and be back before dark!

Those rides took us all over town, from our North End home to the B & I out on South 72nd, or out to Point Defiance Park, or down to the waterfront for some fishing, or downtown itself to check out window displays in the department stores . . . miles . . . hours . . .

The feeling of security!

Goodnight Folks!

We didn’t lock doors. I have no memory of ever locking a door at my childhood home. During the summers the door was left open with just the screen door to keep out bugs. Bedroom windows were open during the night. Us kids from around the neighborhood slept out on the front lawn under the stars, thirty feet from the street, twenty feet from the sidewalk, no fence to protect us.

The feeling of security!

My "secure" childhood home
My "secure" childhood home | Source

And More

No seatbelts while driving a car . . . no helmets while riding a bicycle or roller-skating (a sure way of getting your butt kicked as a sissy) . . . no lifeguards at the lake my family frequented.

And speaking of that lake . . . Lake Surprise . . . there was a diving tower at that lake with diving boards at ten feet, twenty feet, and fifty feet . . . think about that now, a fifty-foot diving board at a public swimming hole, no lifeguard, just a sign telling you to use caution.

The feeling of security!

The Weird Thing Was . . .

Did people die riding in the back of pickup trucks back then? I’m sure they did, and I’m sure kids had brain injuries because they weren’t wearing helmets or seatbelts, but that just seemed to be accepted as the price you paid for having fun, you know?

Oddly, I don’t remember anyone in our neighborhood ever experiencing a prowler or a robbery at night, even though every single house was basically open for business for burglars/prowlers. Isn’t that remarkable as seen from our eyes in 2018? That feeling of security seemed to be justified until . . .

The Night It All Changed

August 31, 1961, the day, the night, that the feeling of security disappeared forever in Tacoma, Washington.

An eight-year old girl by the name of Ann Marie Burr disappeared from her bedroom in the middle of the night, never to be seen again. She was tucked into bed, just like any other night, but sometime during that night a stranger opened a living room window, climbed in, walked upstairs to Ann’s room, and abducted her.

The night our innocence died!

The night security took on a whole different meaning.

In 1971 young women began disappearing in the Pacific Northwest.

In 1975 Ted Bundy, a resident of Tacoma, Washington, and an acquaintance of Ann Marie Burr, was first arrested.

Our paperboy, Ted Bundy!

The feeling of security!

In memory of a young girl
In memory of a young girl | Source

From My Perspective

It was also around that time that seat belts became mandatory, and laws were passed forbidding riding in the bed of a pickup truck. Helmets followed, first for motorcyclists and then bicyclists, the insurance companies pouring millions of dollars into the political arena in an attempt to cut down on injury claims.

Hitchhiking became illegal.

Doors and windows locked.

Gated communities multiplied rapidly.

The illusion of security!

The word “sociopath” became known to everyone with a pulse, as did psychopath. Those who fed on the suffering of others seemed to multiply in number rapidly. Eye contact was not made on the streets. All strangers were to be scrutinized and avoided. Weapons of self-defense were carried as an accepted practice. Everyone was a potential monster. No one was to be trusted.

The weapons got bigger.

The killing sprees continued.

The illusion of security!

My perspective? Perhaps I’ve lived too long. Perhaps I’m the human equivalent of the Tyrannosaurus Rex. It is my time to go, what was once true is no longer valid, dust to dust, and so it goes. But since this is my article, and my musings, I will toss out a few thoughts just for the hell of it.

Bigger weapons will not stop evil!

Living in fear is not living!

Hiding from reality is no reality I wish to partake in!

None of us, ever, anywhere, are ever secure and safe, not totally, never have been, never will be!

What Happened?

I don’t believe for a second that Evil was born that night in 1961. It has always been with us and always will be. Jack the Ripper plied his trade long before 1961.

So the question becomes this: what are we going to do about it?

I can’t answer for you. It’s a full-time job keeping myself on the track and avoiding derailment. But I do know there is something wrong with our society, something intrinsically wrong, and until we discover what that is, and take steps to rectify it, we will continue, as a society, to live a guarded life of fear, where every person we meet is looked at with veiled suspicion.

I refuse to live that way!

Thinking back, to when I was a child, I cannot remember anyone in our neighborhood owning a gun. That, to me, is almost unbelievable, ten years removed from World War 2, most of the fathers in that neighborhood veterans, and none owned a gun. It just wasn’t a thing, as though the vets had seen the worst that man could manufacture in warfare and they wanted none of it in civilian life.

Instead of warding off evil with weapons, they made their neighborhood a community where everyone looked out for each other. It was, to a real extent, one large extended family in our neighborhood, a place where people cared about one another, a place that felt . . . secure.

Whether it was, or was not, actually secure is not terribly important to me in 2018. All I know is I much preferred that neighborhood over the neighborhoods I see today.

2018 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

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    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Pamela! So nice to hear from you. Yes, changes will come; let's hope they are for the good, my friend.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      2 months ago from Sunny Florida

      Hi Bill, Our childhoods were similar in many ways, except there wee no missing children in our area of town. I remember when I was young how we would stand outside with our hands over our hearts and sing the national anthem with pride in our country. We rode bikes too, and walked the railroad tracks.

      I don't remember kids being mean to each other until I was in high school when I saw about 4 boys pull the pants off another boy. I thought that was horrible at the time.

      Today makes me miss times of old, and I know changes will continue to come that I may or may not like. I like to know God is in change, and I will eventually be in a better place.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      2 months ago from Olympia, WA

      PS, I hope this finds you and that remarkable family of yours well. Naive? Then I am naive as well. The angels are with you today, my friend, and I'll send some more your way just in case you need them.

      bill

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 

      2 months ago from sunny Florida

      I too grew up in a time of no locked doors and long walks and rides away from home. I grew up in a tiny tiny town where everyone knew everyone and everyone looked after everyone. No Ted in our time, thank goodness. But now there are Teds everywhere, sadly. What can we do about it?

      I live now in another small town and it has not gone unscathed by violence Last year a young woman was killed here...wrong place at the wrong time and still the perp is out there. Drug deal gone wrong.. I remain cautiously optimistic that the tide will turn one day Bill. I refuse to think any other way. I still maintain that one part of this equation is each of us reaching out to the other even in a casual way by speaking to everyone we encounter and offering a helping hand or listening ear when we can. Naive? Probably but remain every hopeful. I think of you often but so much is going on with my family I do not get on here very often. Many Angels and blessings are on the way ps

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      3 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Rodric, a long time ago it was called yellow journalism. I think it still exists. Fear sells, and I believe in what you are saying. Thank you for that share.

    • Rodric29 profile image

      Rodric Anthony Johnson 

      3 months ago from Peoria, Arizona

      I grew up in a time where the streets where no so violent. I grew up in Miami, Florida for a few years in the inner city areas near Overtown. My brother and I would stay out until midnight sometimes playing with other kids in the neighborhood. We should have been killed or sold into the human trafficking underworld, but we were not!

      We live in a cozy little community where we do not worry about security so much now in Peoria, however, Television makes every place seem sinister. All the movies and media that have come out in the last 30 years makes us fear the mundane and the familiar. I loved this article. I agree that evil has not increased more than it should with population growth. It is reported more often. I still do not trust my kids going out due to the movies I have seen. The news makes me experience things psychologically that I have never and will never experience in person.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      3 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I had not heard, Marlene, and I am so terribly sorry you have to go through that. Take care dear friend and please stay in touch so we all know you are all right.

      Hugs and blessings always

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 

      3 months ago from USA

      "Be home before dark!" That was the only instruction my parents gave my siblings and me as we ran out the door to play. Now it is as you describe with locked doors, location trackers, and phone calls to check in. I believe the crazies were always in existence, but they either hid in the closet or people just didn't talk about them. I don't know if you heard, but I am being stalked by a crazy psycho who seems to know more about me than I know about myself. Since learning about him, my lifestyle has changed tremendously. I keep my doors locked at all times, I never go anywhere alone, and I have tightened up my social media platforms so tight I hardly have any kind of real communication with family and friends anymore. I'm always looking over my shoulder. But, here is the thing I like the most about the neighborhood I am moving into - they are the most protective people in the world. They are all looking out for me and I feel so protected because of them. People call them the "hill" (hillbilly) people, but I'll tell you this about those hillbillies. They know how to protect each other. I will soon be part of that community. Will I be secure? I don't know, but in my mind I will feel safe.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Ann! It is a balance for sure. If I were a parent of a young one right now, I know I would lean towards more freedom. That's just the way I am. I won't allow fear to dictate my life or the life of my child.

      Always good to hear from you, dear friend.

      bill

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      4 months ago from SW England

      You've just about described my childhood too, though I was out in a village in the middle of the Sussex countryside although not too remote. We had the freedom to roam and we had fun. I feel sorry for many children these days as they are not allowed to 'go out to play' as we did, coming back for tea time.

      You're right, too, that we shouldn't restrict our children so much. As long as they're aware and know how to read signs etc then the risk is reduced. It's a balance between freedom and common sense I suppose.

      Great piece, bill.

      Ann

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I completely agree,Dee! Those days are sadly gone.

      My best to you and your husband!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      4 months ago

      I remember going to the grocery store for my mom to buy a loaf of bread which was about twelve blocks from home. There was never any fear of harm of any kind as I walked there and back. I am afraid our children will never know that security. Stay well and safe out there, Bill.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you for sharing that, Susan! I can't imagine living in Detroit at that time.....talk about a different perspective!!!

    • Susan Sears profile image

      Susan Sears 

      4 months ago

      Yes, Billy it did appear to be a different world back in the 60’ a different world indeed. I lived in Detroit, yes Detroit and it was nothing as a five year old girl to run 6 blocks to the store to grab mom something she needed, to walk through alleys and collect bottles to go get candy... a different world indeed. Our rule was be home before the streetlights turned on...our safety changed with the riots that broke out...when dad told us keep the curtains closed and if we dared to peek we saw police cruisers driving slowly around the block. Eventually, we were shipped up north to keep us safe and shortly after we moved. The world appeared different than and now even more so...the feeling of security had definitely changed.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Readmikenow, thank you for sharing your experience. It is an eye-opening experience for sure, moving from a large city to a small one....

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Suhail, I am in complete agreement. It is a sad state of affairs, when money is more important than lives, but that is the way of the world, and has been for centuries.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Indeed, Larry, it is a balancing act,and it is something we, as a society, must learn to compromise on.Thank you for your thoughts.

    • Readmikenow profile image

      Readmikenow 

      4 months ago

      When I was very young we lived in a dangerous part of a big city where most people didn't speak a lot of English. Fear was part of every day life. Then we moved to a small rural town of 10,000 in another state. What a difference. The people accepted me and eventually I lost my accent and spoke English like everyone in the town. It was during the late 60s and early 70s. Plenty of bike hikes, boy scouts and feelings of being very safe. Most people had guns and we never thought a thing about it. We always locked doors and did other things we did in the big city because old habits die hard. Most people thought we were silly in a lot of ways.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 

      4 months ago from Oklahoma

      It's a balancing act. What things are good precaution and what's not and its a matter of opinion.

      To me it's idiocy beyond idiocy to not wear a seatbelt, while it's a compromise of our freedom to have metal detectors and policemen at our schools, for example. Other people might feel the opposite.

      Thought provoking read.

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

      Suhail Zubaid aka Clark Kent 

      4 months ago from Mississauga, ON

      Hi Bill,

      I just wanted to clarify, because I think I was not able to better explain that my childhood and boyhood was as safe as can be; we were almost living in heavens prior to Adam eating the forbidden apple. It was the 80s, when under USA-Saudi Arabia-Pakistan nexus in the garb of fighting communism in Afghanistan, war and guns flowed into our country, bringing violence and terror with them.

      Wars and guns can never keep peace. Unfortunately, big conglomerates and our politicians make money out of selling arms and armament.

      Donald Trump, in order to get a trillion dollar arms deal with Saudi Arabia, divided the Middle East into pro Saudia and pro-Iran groups, fighting over Syria and Yemen.

      On US soil itself, NRA and hidden interests will never allow guns sales to be reduced. Money is more important than children's lives.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      MizB, your parents' reaction was typical of that time...don't cause dissension with good neighbors...wow, have times changed or what?

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      More often than not, Genna, that is the reason for those break-ins! Grrrr!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I hear ya, Sha! I had my truck broken into last year for the same reason...change! I had to replace a window for fifty cents in change!!!! I'm with you...I miss those days, dear friend.

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      4 months ago

      LOL, Bill, according to my mother, my sister's screams woke up the household. She was only 10 or 11 yers old. When asked what the prowler looked like, she said the name of a neighborhood boy. "He kinda looked like Johnny." or words to that effect. That's why we suspected the neighbor. We knew that he was harmless, or thought so, anyway, so that calmed our family down somewhat. My parents didn't go talk to the boy's parents to see if he was home that night. They probably should have, but they didn't want to create dissension with a good (adult) neighbor if none existed. They just started locking our doors. Hope you had a great Easter, my friend.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      4 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Thanks, Bill. I appreciate the kind words. (In retrospect, it could have been much worse, Bill except he was later ticked off that I had scared him off.) He stole my digital camera, which was on a kitchen countertop, and had many photos of friends and family. I don't give a hoot about the camera; the years of photos are irreplaceable. We think he was a late teen or younger adult who wanted money for dope, and some kicks. C'est la vie, my friend.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      4 months ago from Central Florida

      Bill, I miss the good old days. Today, I keep my door locked even during the daytime while I'm home. Things have gone to hell in a hand basket. My son's car was broken into twice, in our driveway while we were at home! What once was a safe, friendly neighborhood is now full of degenerates who would rather steal than live honestly. What really gets me is all that was stolen (his car and others in the neighborhood) was change and cigarettes! Nothing that could be pawned. Just change to feed the vices. I've ended up having to install security cameras on my house. It sucks that I had to do that, but guess what? No one messes with our house anymore!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Suhail, I can't imagine living in those conditions like you mentioned from your childhood. Such hardships...such danger...thank you for sharing those memories with us. I'm glad you are in Canada, my friend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Again I am very happy to hear that, Genna!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Oh my God, Genna, I'm so glad you are all right. What a terribly frightening experience. So much for a sense of security! Whew! That could have had a much different ending.

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

      Suhail Zubaid aka Clark Kent 

      4 months ago from Mississauga, ON

      HI Bill,

      An excellent hub on the way things were and what they have become.

      In the country I grew up in (Pakistan), the security that you described persisted up until 1979. It all went upside down when the Afghan War on the former USSR started under US money and armaments, fighters prepared by Saudi Wahabi school of extremist Islam, and logistics provided by Pakistan. The money and arms flowing into Pakistan changed our cultural fabric eternally.

      I distinctly recall that as a 15 years old, I used to travel all alone to my high school, almost 1000 kms away from my home. I used to take a combination of trains and buses and it took me two days traveling with strangers, who would gladly share their food with me and even carry a bag of books to help me with carrying the suite case. This was up until 1980. By 1986, however, when I returned on vacations from my University in New York, one year prior to graduation, I saw chaos every where.

      Where do we go from here?

      I think living in Canada has made my family and I return to the days of my childhood and youth. No guns have mostly meant that our homes can be guarded by our dogs. However, this may not longer be possible in the USA. Surely, gun keepers are not going to return their guns. Americans will have to find a different way.

    • profile image

      Genna East 

      4 months ago

      Sorry, Bill, I meant to add that my intruder didn't harm me physically -- I awoke and sacred him off by yelling at the top of my voice. Instincts are odd in that they can come to our rescue when we need them the most.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      4 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

      OMG, Ted Bundy. One of the monsters, like Gacey (NEVER trust a clown), and Ridgeway. These and other fears seem to live with us more and more. I never experienced the fear behind the reason why we should "lock all of our windows and doors and keep a full alarm system" until about 18 months ago when someone broke into my house while I was home, alone, sleeping. I won't go into the details, but fear stalked me -- as did he -- for several months following the incident. And I kept wondering, is our neighborhood safe? That's one of the reasons we began our own neighborhood watch system.

      Where did our old neighborhoods go, Bill - -the ones we grew up with? When we knew our neighbors, and trusted them...some of whom became good friends.

      When I visit my son and watch my granddaughter ride her bike, I can't help but worry a little, but am careful not to let her see it. Those carefree days are precious -- days we used to enjoy, ourselves. I remember them with longing.

      Excellent article, Bill.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      My pleasure, William, and I vote for them as well...a fool's vote, but still, I would return to them in an instant.

      Happy Easter my friend!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      MizB, I'll bet your sister was scarred for life. That is too frightening to imagine, seeing someone staring at you through the window in the dead of night....and yes, the South, the country folks, guns meant food. No doubt about it, a different world from where I grew up, but still the same in many ways.

      Happy Easter kind lady!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Michael my friend, your upbringing was so different from mine. It is amazing to hear your brief stories of that time, before you came to America. Thank you for sharing...as for Detroit...I hear there are changes happening to that city. I hope so and soon.

      Happy Easter and blessings to you always!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Jackie! Out in the country it was quite normal to own a gun. Same with certain parts of the country, and I have no problem with people owning a gun...none at all....I differ from some of my Liberal friends in that regard.

      Happy Easter my friend!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Well shoot, Elf, you want common sense from the public? lol Shoot for the moon, my friend.

      Thank you and Happy Easter to you!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Yes they have, Linda! Yes they have!

      Happy Easter up north!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I do too, Peggy! I miss those days of innocence, and I don't think society will ever seem them again.

      Happy Easter Peggy!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I completely agree,Flourish! Now the question is, do we allow fear to rule our lives. I choose not to. Some would call me a fool. I've been called worse.

      Happy Easter my friend!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I like your point about the media, Mary! I do believe there are those in power who are happy when we are fearful...makes us easier to rule. :) Happy Easter, Mary!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      The answers to questions like that are never easy, Peg, and those who want an easy answer don't understand the question.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Happy Easter Zulma!

      I can't imagine growing up like you did....but then I can't imagine living in a huge city. I would have grown up angry and wary constantly. Glad you escaped, my friend, and were able to experience some peace of mind and body.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      All true,Pop! I chuckle when I see parents at the bus stop waiting for their ten year olds, like the kid can't walk one block without Mom's help.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 

      4 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      I vote for the 60s, Bill They were wonderful, innocent times, but I know it will never be that way again. It's just a memory. Thanks for reminding me of what once was.

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      4 months ago

      This was a wonderfully innocent time, but things were a little different in the South. You are lucky you are a boy because boys could wander at will, but girls were expected to ask permission to visit a friend and to tell her parents when she might be home. Or that was the deal at least in my small town.

      "Mama, may I go bike riding with Pat and Wanda"

      "Yes, but be home. By the way, where are you going?"

      "Up past 26th street. There's a path in the woods that we like to explore."

      "OK, just be home by four, and stay away from that pond."

      Our doors were never locked either until one summer night when I was about 17. My dad was painting the house and left a ladder propped up beside the window of the bedroom that my sister and I shared. I'd gone on a date so she was asleep alone in the room. She woke up and saw a male peeping in the window. She screamed and the whole household was in a turmoil when I got home. After that, all doors were locked, even if it was just hooking the screen door. We think it was the teenage boy who lived next door, but as your Ted Bundy story goes, you just never know.

      I do miss those innocent days, though. And I identify with Jackie. Every household had a gun because a gun meant meat in the winter time.

    • profile image

      Michael Milec 

      4 months ago

      ”What are we going to do about it?" - you've asked. Watching / wondering where does it all ends eventually. Participating in this life-game passively or actively - thus far mostly we are spectators hoping and perhaps expecting , the "old good times'' are coming back ... In that case I will once again hitchhiking through out that time West Germany - a stranger from the communistic country having special favor as a guest university student...A society when you lost something, you could go tracing it back and find it since nobody took other people’s property...It was fresh after WW2, mostly everyone was working hard for mere existence. Only for a season. Soon a new wave " freedom" - to me as reconstruction of morality took a direction presently known as for the worse...

      First time I remember as legally new comer during early seventies when the downtown Detroit's Hudsons store department has been shut up permanently due to disappearing things without being payed... Two blocs down of our residency a priest has been murdered in his office, a robbery victim... Lately we do not dare to drive through that area anymore... Things are being change as we getting closer to the last sunset on this earth, hoping that surviving generation will wake up and start writing a new Years of the Lord...

      Have a blessed tonight and tomorrow my friend.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 

      4 months ago from The Beautiful South

      Same here Bill, but I was out in the boonies and everyone I knew owned a gun. You just did. You didn't necessarily see them or you might on a rack, but most were kept out of sight until they were used for hunting. Meals came from those guns, most meals. Yes I was a little girl of about ten and my dad made sure I knew how to shoot every gun in the house and I can tell you I did not like that shot gun and only had one round with it. Just like my brothers though I was taught how to always hold a gun and to never point it at anyone whether it was loaded or not.

      There are two sides and we need to see them both. I am not a dangerous person and have not held a gun in years but if I need to I can,,,and I will. If Bundy knew any one of those girls carried a gun they would be alive today.

      Peace.

    • RedElf profile image

      RedElf 

      4 months ago from Canada

      Awesome hub - God I miss those days - not because of rose-colored glasses though - we all have to grow up sometime. But you're right, and it seems to me we can react by doing what our fathers did - building a community, or we can react with fear. The second is easier - we don't have to think - just be afraid and say no to everything. Be afraid of strangers, afraid of the dark...

      And we should be afraid of some things and some people, but we can't shut out everything the least bit different and hide away - that's no answer. Like anything, it will take work and effort, and commitment. And maybe a little common sense - Oh, darn, I knew there was a catch somewhere.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      4 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Your article reminded me of my childhood. My friends and I would travel for miles on foot or on our bicycles. I don't remember my parents ever being concerned about our explorations. Many of our neighbours were our friends and there was a sense a community in our neighbourhood. Times have certainly changed.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      4 months ago from Houston, Texas

      When I was a child it was exactly as you described. If doors were locked which was seldom everyone knew that the key was under the doormat or in a nearby flowerpot. We had to be home before dark just like you and had so much fun roaming about. It was an innocent time just like the television shows portrayed. At least that was my impression and I loved it. Today we keep doors locked even if we are at home. Wish we could all go back to those days of innocence.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      4 months ago from USA

      I used to live in that world too as a young child but then some burglars broke in through open windows when I was three and entered my parents’ bedroom. One rummaged through my mother’s jewelry box and slid his hand up my mother’s leg from the foot to about the knee. She had initially thought the stranger in the bedroom was me, a three year old who always awakened her to take me to the potty at night. My dad slept way too soundly next to her and she had too additional infants in adjoining rooms. As the stranger slid his hand up her knee, she feared back and kicked him and he fell back on the ground then ran. It was always as dangerous but we deluded ourselves.

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 

      4 months ago from Brazil

      We used to go swimming in ditches, reservoirs, and canals. I could often be found riding my bike or sitting in a tree. Although I never hitchhiked, my sisters did. Now that would be called, 'risky play', for kids.

      I am not sure it is less safe, I think the media (and the powers that be) want people to live in fear.

      Although we look back and think it was a better time. For the kids of today, these will be the good times they remember.

      Your articles always receive interesting comments. Vladimir made some interesting points I hadn't thought about before.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 

      4 months ago from Dallas, Texas

      A good question, that's for sure, Bill. Why? Why, indeed.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you very much, Jackie!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Peg! This is a societal problem and it may surprise you to learn that even though I am a Liberal politically, I do not believe stricter gun laws will solve what is ailing this country. It goes much deeper than that. If I want to kill someone, I don't need a gun to do it...but why would I want to kill someone as a solution to my angst? That's the question we need to ask.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Beautifully stated, Manatita! I, too,prefer to live in love and let love be my guiding light in dealing with people. Could that philosophy backfire one day? Of course, but I prefer to embrace humanity rather than fear it.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      John, thanks for being so determined in posting. I have experienced a break-in once. It pissed me off but I didn't live in fear over it. It's a mindset that we all need to adopt. Bad things happen occasionally, but the majority of life is pretty safe and good, or so I think.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Chitrangada Sharan! Worry, worry, worry..that's all we, as a society, seem to do...how about we spend some time enjoying life instead of fearing it?

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Shannon, there are close to 350 million people in this country, and I would guess that close to 340 million of them are basically good people. I like those odds. Could the other ten million hurt me at some point? Sure, but I still love those odds. I will not live in fear. I can be cautious without being afraid.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Mike, your take on Vietnam is as good a reason as any. I don't have the answers. The change happened slowly, over time, one day at a time, like a mystery illness for which there may not be a cure.

      I got it...rubbing hands together....scary funny!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Great question, Dora! I won't be alive to see it, but great question.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Cheers, Ruby! I love that the homeless knew they could get fed at your home....beautiful memory my friend!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you for sharing, Mary. We still don't lock our doors all the time. Of course, we have two dogs as a warning system but still, I refuse to fall prey to paranoia.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I love your view of life, Kari, and change is going to happen one person at a time, saying hi to strangers, breaking down those walls of distrust one person at a time.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Exactly, Nithya! Why did it all change? And how do we change it back?

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Yep, I remember gas being stolen even in our neighborhood, Chris. There was random vandalism for sure...but nothing where you feared for your life when you ran an errand.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Isn't that an amazing statement, Barbara? In case people come to your door to harm you? What, a gun next to the door "just in case?" That's no way to live.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Sis you just said a mouthful when you said we sacrificed a lot over the years. We had so much freedom, and we were convinced we were all right all of the time. Not so today,and yes, that is a sacrifice, a sacrifice for the illusion of safety, because none of us is truly safe in today's world of car bombs and random drive-by shootings.

      Hugs, Sis! I sure like having you as my sister.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 

      4 months ago from United Kingdom

      Bill, the childhood pass you speak of was the stuff of TV shows and movies. I didn't grow up like this. I lived in the roughest area in the South Bronx. Hanging out with friends unsupervised was unheard of. If you left your door unlocked and were burgled, you had no one to blame but yourself. Neighbours looked out for themselves and everyone was suspect. I left this environment at the first opportunity and I have never returned.

      I now live in a village with a population of 5000+/-. It's the kind of place where families have lived for generations and people know each other. It's safe, pretty, the kind of place I only saw on TV. I did not raise my children the way I was. I didn't want them growing up afraid. I taught them basic personal safety, then let them explore the world at their own pace.

      They all grown now, have jobs and can interact with others in a way I don't think would have been possible if I had wrapped them in cotton wool. Trust and faith goes so much further than paranoia.

      BTW, I do leave the door unlock most of the time.

      Happy Easter, Bill.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Allison! I didn't really realize until recently that I never heard of anyone owning a gun for protection back then....really strange when you think of that huge social change in a matter of fifty years.

    • cracklepopsnap profile image

      Jackie 

      4 months ago from Detroit

      Very well written article.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 

      4 months ago

      I grew up in Brooklyn, New York. We learned to be street smart at a young age. We were aware of danger, but we did our best to stay clear, and we were free. I played outside until the sun went down. I rode my bike down to the water and came home in time for dinner. I learned to navigate the subway system by the time I was 11, and I was free. I gave my children the same kind of freedom in the midst of a suburban neighborhood. Now I see parents at every bus stop, even if the kids are in Middle School. There are dangers out there, but there always were. We just didn't hear about all of it 24/7. It's sad, really sad.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 

      4 months ago from Dallas, Texas

      I remember that feeling of security and innocence, Bill. Riding our bicycles was the only way to get around as a kid. Our parents didn't drive us around to our social commitments unless it was to church or doctor's appointments. We grew up in a town of 33,000 people where you could ride your bike to the edge of the island and back in the same afternoon. We never locked our doors until we moved to the crime-ridden city of Miami where the news reported break-ins, strangulation, stabbings or shootings daily.

      I believe there has been a change in our culture that has affected the sensibilities of people. Back in the days you speak of above, if a boy and girl broke up and she found someone new, the boys might duke it out in the school playground with their fists. But nobody brought a gun to take revenge on their lost love. And most of us owned guns or our parents did. My dad's .22 rifle sat in the corner for years, the same rifle he used as a child to shoot and bring home dinner in the lean years on the farm. We never touched it, or else. . .

      I don't believe that criminals will be deterred from their activities by making more gun laws. From my perspective, they don't seem to follow the rules. Anyhow, as you've said, our generation is passing the baton and it seems like we've passed it to some rather vocal teenagers, who in society's rules, do not have the right to vote nor own guns, and yet, somehow, they still find them and use them, even in gun-free zones.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 

      4 months ago from london

      A passionate and heartfelt piece Bro and i'm with you all the way. Some will listen ... the receptive ones. The few with grey coats dinning with Caviar on Golf resorts won't. Ego and greed hold sway there. Major problems for you and I.

      I feel that the answer is Love. You and I Bro and a few more will do our part. With God's Grace I will continue to serve. But some say I have one God ...two Gods...another God or accuse me of something else. Just saying. They do not know how the Heart bleeds with service.

      Yes, human ignorance was here in Roman times and long before. Just changing shades like clouds.

      An emotive subject and needing to be written. Let us try Bro. Let us try. This journey is not for the suspicious ... the doubters ... the faint-hearted ... the complacent and those full of apathy ... the ...

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      4 months ago from Queensland Australia

      I have tried to post a comment here three times and for some reason, it disappears before I post it. Oh for the carefree days of our youth. We never locked doors and windows, and I walked two miles to and from school with my friends in first grade...no adult supervision. In all my years I have not experienced one break in..touch wood. But as someone said, even if you lock everything, a determined thief will still find a way. Great article.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      4 months ago from New Delhi, India

      Excellent article and so much relatable!

      I really miss those old days, when I was growing up. Now there is a great sense of insecurity, everywhere. It seems that our minds are always worried about something, always praying for the safety and security of our loved ones.

      Thanks for sharing this!

    • shanmarie profile image

      Shannon Henry 

      4 months ago from Texas

      Amen to that last statement of yours!

      Obviously, I didn't grow up in the 60s. I probably even managed to make the 70s sound like an antique decade. Well, technically, it may be. Over 25 years old.

      Hahaha. . . .But my point is that I remember riding my bike all over my neighborhood when I was my kids' age. I wouldn't let them do it, though just yet. And I remember riding without seat belts in the back of my aunt's station wagon, standing up and seeing who could remain standing the longest.

      But all in all, I prefer the illusion of safety rather than living in fear. I have enough to fear and fears in the past that were only illusions ... I have no desire to add to any of that. I don't sleep with my doors unlocked, but I don't fear going into crowds. It's all about balance, I guess. Necessary precautions without going overboard.

      When I lived in Southeast Texas, before my old (as in age, not prior) home burned to the ground, I had my home broken into multiple times, mostly family members, we assume. Things were stolen that can never be replaced by family and strangers. Somehow I managed not to live afraid. It just angered me that people could violet someone else that way. When we left for a hurricane someone took an embroidered peacock my grandma made and I cried over that loss. But I let go if the anger ling ago, too. I never stay angry long. I've just found that things like this have made me more defensive as I age.

      On a different note, have you heard Luke Bryan's new song, "Most People Are Good"? I think I included it at the end of my hub about dreaming. I think it's true. Most people are good at heart. And I was commenting about being jaded versus being corrupt must the other day to someone. I strive not to be either one, but at least people who are corrupt know that they are. Many times when we become jaded we are not aware of it until something makes it painfully obvious. So, yes, I would rather live with the illusion of safety and let it create a feeling of safety.

    • mckbirdbks profile image

      mckbirdbks 

      4 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      Hello Bill - I have read this presentation and most of the comments a couple of times now. Perhaps Vietnam changed our culture, feed our media, feed discontent, woke us from the establishment myths.

      No Ted Bundy, in my neighborhood. "I was the paperboy," he said rubbing his hands together with a thousand mile stare in his eyes.

    • CaribTales profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      4 months ago from The Caribbean

      Wonder how school children will define security when they are our age. Will guns be a synonym? We were (are) blessed!

    • profile image

      Ruby 

      4 months ago

      Bill I can relate to your look-back in time. We lived the same way you did, never locking doors, windows wide open day and night. The only drug around was alcohol and they didn't but it, they made it!!!!!! I remember well the many times bums hopped off the trains and came to our house to get fed. Word spread and sometimes there would be five or six sitting on our front porch eating whatever we had. Those days are gone but will never be forgotten. Cheers my friend

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      4 months ago from Ontario, Canada

      When we read about or read the news of events in different parts of the world, we get scared. We take precautions. My husband always tells me that if people want to break in they'll find ways. We never lock our suitcases and sometimes, they don't arrive with us but nothing has ever been lost. When we go to our doctor or grocery shopping, we leave the house unlocked. I know that in some places, you can't do this. Our sense of security has been shattered.

    • k@ri profile image

      Kari Poulsen 

      4 months ago from Ohio

      I grew up in a small town, that security you describe was there into the '80's when I moved. Later, I lived in NM and it was secure. Sometimes I think you just need to trust in God and your children. I have lived many places, and I would say 99.9% of the people are very good. I still cannot pass someone without saying hi.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      4 months ago from Dubai

      Life was great in the good old days. We used to go out play with our friends and our parents never worried about us. Going to school or college was fun and we all enjoyed the experience without thinking about any threat to us.

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 

      4 months ago from Missoula, Montana through August 2018

      Rural Indiana was a pretty safe place when I was growing up. We did have a problem with people driving up our quarter-mile lane at night and stealing gasoline from the tanks we used to fill the trucks and tractors. But I came and went on my pony at will from about age ten on. First came a b-b gun then a .22 rifle. I bought the ammo over the counter in town. No age limit on the bullets. It's a different world, Bill.

    • Barbara Kay profile image

      Barbara Badder 

      4 months ago from USA

      I agree and life was so much easier back then. For some reason, everyone seems to be more insecure than ever now. One of my friends just made a statement that you need guns in case people come to your door to harm you. It made me wonder what people she is afraid of. I wished I had asked.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      4 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Bro...It has taken "me," small town, trusting, rose-colored-glasses-girl," to adjust to the changes in our world. The girl who never locked a door, would leave her car running with purse on the front seat while buzzing into the Post Office and thinking nothing of hopping onto an elevator with a lone, seedy-looking man in a trench coat, ogling me with bloodshot eyes. Ahhh duh, and I'm not even blonde, just quite clearly, I was lucky!

      I'm so different now, I've sacrificed a lot of my joy & spontaneity, much of my openness and carefree attitude. Now what stands out to me is ordinary "paranoia." It sucks and I hate it. All because I insisted upon growing up, facing reality and became "aware." I struggle to prevent a stretch all the way to the other side of stepping into a hermetically-sealed dwelling, with double locks, alarms, fences and pepper spray! Oh yes, and not to mention, my adult sons have been researching "Assisted Living Senior Facilities," I'm sure. They can't fool ole Mom~ not yet anyway. LOL

      Let me just say, I hear you, brother Bill, I understand and agree, but I don't like it at all!! I wish safety & comfort to all. Sis

    • alison monroe profile image

      Alison Monroe 

      4 months ago

      My childhood, in a big suburb, was similiar: no locked doors, I went miles and miles on bikes in all directions. Anyone who owned a gun of a kind you only shoot people with would have been considered pretty paranoid. Then again, in those days, sometimes the pressure of "what would the neighbors think" could feel pretty overwhelming.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Eric, you just gave me a reason to live in Arizona..that's a first. lol I love what your dad said...to keep you in. Great line!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Dave, you speak the truth, my friend. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I am in total agreement with you.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Nikki! It has to change. This undercurrent of fear and distrust affects us all in a negative way.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      There is much truth in what you say, Nell! If all we see is violence, is it surprising that we become violent and afraid?

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I am in total agreement with you, Clive! Thank you for your thoughts.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      4 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      A fun one is that in Arizona it is still perfectly legal to ride in the bed of truck. And it is still legal to hitchhike as long as you don't stand in the middle of the road (so as not to disturb traffic - not for safety)

      In my town of 12,000 when I was born. My dad locked the doors, but said it was to keep us in.

      My wife does fear, I just cannot get into it. I loved my Stingray.

      Thanks buddy for bringing home some memories.

    • whonunuwho profile image

      whonunuwho 

      4 months ago from United States

      Hey Bill. Sounds like we were a lot alike in our growing up days. Yep, things did change a lot in a short time. Violence shown every day and too much freedom by parents for their kids helped cause a lot of problems. Violence shown on T.V. and films contribute so much to unrest and terrible events in places once so benign. Until we accept responsibility for more closely monitoring television and movies for the kids will things begin to improve. Many blessings my friend. Dave

    • nikkikhan10 profile image

      Nikki Khan 

      4 months ago from London

      A great article Bill on past times blessings, unfortunately we don’t have today anymore.I remember me and my sister used to ride a bicycle in all srounding area of our home which would take us hours to get home.We used to play in neighbours for long hours and our parents never said to be careful, only thing they used to say, get home before night.

      Life was so simple and neighbours were like family but now everything is changed.

      Nobody trusts anyone and especially missing women crime is on peak now which has changed all freedom into insecurity and suspicion.

      You’ve done an excellent job here, keep on sharing more.

      Bless you!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Vladimir, you raise some valid points, or so I believe. I was a part of that generation, and I blame many ills of society today on the 60's, even though I thoroughly enjoyed them. Time has given me a new perspective on that time, though, and it is not seen through rose-colored glasses.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 

      4 months ago from England

      I blame the Internet and tv and film. instead of 'brainwashing' people with good programs showing people going to church, helping others etc, all we get is murder, shootings robberies etc. and on the internet everybody round the world can interact. only a bad thing if its from a troll who hates us! bring back the old days.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Janine! Little by little, over the years, it as all changed and eroded. I don't know what can be done either, but we sure better find a solution soon.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      You raise a great point, Linda. We have become isolated as a society...and that, in part, was our downfall.

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