Friday, February 26, 2016

The Man in Black

Johnny Cash was born 85 years ago today.

The Silent Generation, born before the conclusion of the Second War but too young to participate, lived in the shadow of their older cousins and siblings for the first half of their lives.

Then the Baby Boom started to mature, Vietnam intensified, racial segregation was unveiled as racial injustice.

Here's the deal: the Baby Boom provided the ground troops to those struggles but who gave it inspiration?  Who provided cover when the "Greatest Generation" called them cowards and agitators?  Who was it that had been laying the ground work for the justice movements of the mid and late 1960's since the early 1950's?

It was members of the Silent Generation.

The Presidency was never held by a member of the Silent Generation but they provided many leaders who made our nation a better place.  Even if you disagree with every argument or position laid out by someone on this list, we benefit from their service as a "loyal opposition."

"As iron sharpens iron, so one many sharpens another."

Lenny Bruce (1925-1966) Comedian, Social Critic 
William F. Buckley, Jr. (1925-    ) Columnist, Author 
Johnny Carson (1925-2005) TV Talk Show Host 
Robert F. Kennedy (1925-1968) Senator, US Attorney General, Presidential Candidate 
Paul Newman (1925-    ) Actor 
Gore Vidal (1925-    ) Author 
Malcolm X (1925-1965) Black Muslim Leader 
Alan Ginsberg (1926-1997) Poet 
Alan Greenspan (1926-    ) Federal Reserve Chair 
Hugh Hefner (1926-    ) Publisher 
Timothy Lahaye (1926-    ) Minister, Bestselling Author 
Jerry Lewis (1926-    ) Comedian 
Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962) Actress 
Harry Belafonte (1927-    ) Singer 
Caesar Chavez (1927-1993) Labor Organizer, United Farm Workers 
Bob Fosse (1927-1987) Jazz Dancer, Choreographer, Director 
Sidney Poitier (1927-    ) Actor 
Andy Warhol (1927-1987) Artist 
Michael Harrington (1928-1989) Author, Social Critic 
Jack Kevorkian (1928-    ) Physician, Assisted Suicide Advocate 
Shirley Temple Black (1928-    ) Actress, Ambassador  
Grace Kelly (1929-1982) Actress 
Martin Luther King, Jr. (1929-1968) Minister, Civil Rights Leader 
Neil Armstrong (1930-    ) Astronaut, First man on the moon 
Warren Buffet (1930-    ) Investor 
Mario Cuomo (1930-    ) Gov. of New York, Democrat Leader 
Clint Eastwood (1930-    ) Actor 
Sandra Day O’Conner (1930-    ) First Woman Supreme Court Justice 
Ross Perot (1930-    ) Entrepreneur, Presidential Candidate 
Pat Robertson (1930-    ) Religious Broadcasting Executive, Presidential Candidate 
Bancroft, Anne (1931-2005) Actress 
James Dean (1931-1955) Actor 
James Earl Jones (1931-    ) Actor 
Bernard F. Law (1931-    ) Former Roman Catholic Archbishop 
Mickey Mantle (1931-1995) Baseball Player 
Willie Mays (1931-    ) Baseball Player 
Dan Rather (1931-    ) TV Journalist 
Barbara Walters (1931-    ) TV Journalist 
Edward M. Kennedy (1932-    ) Senator 
Elvis Presley (1932-1977) Singer 
Donald Rumsfeld (1932-    ) Defense Secretary 
John Updike (1932-    ) Author 
Jerry Falwell (1933-    ) Minister, Evangelist, Founder of Moral Majority 
Dianne Fienstein (1933-    ) Senator 
Susan Sontag (1933-2004) Critic, Essayist, Novelist 
Henry Aaron (1934-    ) Baseball Player 
Pat Boone (1934-    ) Singer 
Shirley MacLaine (1934-    ) Actress 
Ralph Nadar (1934-    ) Consumer Advocate, Presidential Candidate 
Bill Russell (1934-    ) Basketball Player, First Black Pro Basketball Coach 
Norman Shwarzkopf (1934-    ) Gulf War General 
Bart Starr (1934    ) NFL Quaterback 
Gloria Steinem (1934-    ) Author, Feminist 
John Sweeny (1934-    ) AFL-CIO President 
Woody Allen (1935-    ) Actor, Director 
Eldridge Cleaver (1935-1998) Black Panthers Leader, Social Critic 
Jack Kemp (1935-    ) VP Candidate, HUD Secretary, NFL Quarterback 
Wilt Chamberlain (1936-1999) Professional Basketball Player 
James Dobson (1936-    ) Focus on the Family, Founder 
Elizabeth Hanford Dole (1936-    ) Senator, Red Cross head, Cabinet Member 
Abbie Hoffman (1936-1989) Political Activist 
Buddy Holly (1936-1959) Musician 
Michael Landon (1936-1991) Actor 
John McCain (1936-    ) Senator 
Bill Cosby (1937-    ) Comedian 
Jane Fonda (1937-    ) Actress, Activist 
Dustin Hoffman (1937-    ) Actor 
Colin Powell (1937-    ) Secretary of State, National Security Advisor, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman
Robert Redford (1937-    ) Actor 
Janet Reno (1937-    ) First Woman US Attorney General 
Ted Turner (1938-    ) TV Executive, Philanthropist 
Natalie Wood (1938-1981) Actress 
Russell Means (1939-    ) Indian Rights 
Lee Harvey Oswald (1939-1963) Assassinated John Kennedy 
Harry Reid (1939-    ) Senate Minority Leader 
Tom Brokaw (1940-    ) TV Journalist 
Nancy Pelosi (1940-    ) House Minority Leader 
Joan Baez (1941-    ) Singer 
Stockley Carmichael (1941- 1998) Black Power Activist 
Dick Cheney (1941-    ) Vice President 
Bob Dylan (1941-    ) Musician, Songwriter 
Jesse Jackson (1941-    ) Minister, Civil Rights Leader 
Martha Stewart (1941-    ) Homemaking Advisor, Entrepreneur, TV Personality 
Muhammad Ali (1942-    ) Boxer 
Michael Eisner (1942-    ) Disney CEO 
Harrison Ford (1942-    ) Actor 
Bill Frist (1942-    ) Senate Majority Leader 
Dennis Hastert (1942-    ) Speaker of the House 
Garrison Keillor (1942-    ) Author, Broadcaster 
Calvin Klein (1942-    ) Fashion Designer 
Kate Michelman (1942-    ) Abortion Rights Activist 
Barbara Streisand (1942-    ) Singer Actress

And let us not forget the Man in Black (1932-2003) Singer:  

We all miss him, Willie, Merle, Bobby, and the rest of us

and we try not to resent those who love him now, but ignored him when he was alive.

Maybe he'd think I'm taking the whole thing too seriously and I should talk more about dogs.

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