Houston: The More Things Change …

Downtown Houston, April 17, 2012

We are not the same world we were in Houston back in the 19th century, but in so many ways, we are. Today we often wrestle with worries over the character, behavior, and fate of our young people, but check out this note from the Houston Daily Post back on May 22, 1886:

Houston Daily Post, May 22, 1886

Worrying about the next generation is not a new invention. The young people of 1886 Houston didn’t have Facebook, Twitter, cars and credit cards, or designer drugs available to them, but they had other stuff. Store shelf home remedy medicines in those days contained everything from opiates to cocaine to alcohol in unregulated volumes. That was enough to do it. And course, Houston in 1886 already had its saloons, pool halls, and other dens of inequity too – and in those times, young people carried no papers to validate their ages by driver’s license.

In 2012, Houston has three fairly new professional sporting venues for baseball, basketball, and football, another brand new one on the way for soccer, and one really old and historic multi-purpose place called the Astrodome that is falling down around itself, and that’s to say nothing of the new and remodeled venues in the works at UH, Rice, and HBU for collegiate football. We also have a plethora of first class performing arts venues downtown that could have only existed as dreams back in 1886,

Ou Houston entertainment facilities were not so fancy and plentiful back in 1886. Check out this posted hue and cry from those times:

Houston Daily Post, June 3, 1886

It’s still the same old story in 2012. What we don’t have, we want. What we do have, we take for granted. What we have over time, we too often simply destroy without further thought, or worse – we allow whatever it is to simply fall apart at our expense. Does that sound familiar on any level in Houston?

Houston's most famous now abandoned "temple of amusement.."

That’s right. It’s still the same old saw, in Houston, and elsewhere. – The more things change, the more they remain the same.


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