It’s been a few years now since our world has been openly invaded by all-things-‘90s. You don’t have to look too far to locate its impact. What we’re wearing, the music on the radio and even current events (Hello! A Clinton could be elected again!) all hold a certain nostalgia that ignites a spark in our brains. We reminisce on how things were, but really, the past has become the present, as if to say no one was paying attention the first time. Lessons unlearned are being retaught and the importance they hold could move mountains (if we don’t screw up).
Every decade can be broken up into two parts, a light side and a dark side, and the 1990s were heavily saturated in both. This was a moment in time when media was taken to a whole new level (first Apple iMac desktop and internet chat rooms), new musical genres barged into the scene (Hip Hop and Grunge) and war hit home on American turf (Oklahoma City Bombing and World Trade Center bombing). A wave of refreshing pop culture flipped the entire script as reality entertainment showed everyone that you too can have your fifteen minutes of fame and a shocking White House cheating scandal proved that even presidents need to get theirs.
To be honest, the ’90s didn’t take shit from anyone. There was fearlessness and determination. Revolution aching in everyone’s bones and outspeak. Spice Girls prompted teens to claim their Girl Power while Lil’ Kim refused to hold back on her sexuality. Nirvana validated feelings of angst and Alanis Morissette gave the go ahead to fall into your female emotions. The Simpson Bronco chase of 1994 had Americans glued to televisions as they pondered “Did he or didn’t he?”. Tupac and KRS-One, among countless others, put a spotlight on police brutality and undying racism-and we all know the sad progression we’ve made in those areas.
Clothing didn’t break the bank, allowing more money to enjoy life before extreme technology ruled our every waking move. Layers of plaid and crop tops acted as subliminal shields from environmental harm. Designer labels were dedicated for the music videos and red carpets, but everyday-people stuck with baggy jeans and oversized tees. No need to impress. An air of confidence was the only garb needed.
The tenacious influence of the ‘90s has come full circle because days of white knuckling are once again hitting a peak. Just as the generation twenty years ago refused to back down, we’re offering an ultimatum for the ignorance and under-rug-sweeping that still plagues us today. If the ‘90s taught us anything, it’s that we are worth a damn. Why stop until a change is made? In 2016, we are equally determined to stand our ground and open minds. And we won’t take “no” for an answer.
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