In the May 15 Your Views, Mr. Larry Craig echoed the heartfelt, sincere feelings of folks who hearken back to the U.S. of decades ago. It was an era of much higher attendance at churches; much more pervasive attitudes of civility and grace toward one another, and more time, money, and adult effort expended on each child.
In those times many families' religions bound them together with common ceremonies, recitations, songs, moral codes, scriptures, etc.
But I think the main reasons why we had less crime, more respectful young folks, better schooling, and seemingly a simpler, happier lifestyle back then are more complex. Especially the fact that the top 5 percent own 90 percent of the wealth of the U.S. today.
Some additional reasons are: 1. the boom then the bust of manufacturing; 2. the more than doubling of the U.S. population since the 1960s; 3. the lack of jobs for Americans that pay a decent wage; 4. the rampant greed of rich folks and U.S. corporations to not want to pay taxes to restore our environment or our schools, or infrastructure; 5. the vast changes in diversity of our population in recent decades; 6. and finally the devastating, hateful, acrimony in our federal government, our politics, and in our legal system.
Look up a Republican guy named Ray LaHood of Illinois. I really liked him and his teamwork, but it is almost impossible for me to find a Republican today that I have any respect for except maybe Colin Powell, who was used and shamelessly abused by his own party.