I grew up in New York City, borough of Brooklyn (Kings County, NY). I remember all of the women would literally scrub the sidewalk with scouring powdered soap and scrub brushes. Everything sparkled, and the community was mostly longshoremen. Street gutters, swept by homeowners and residents.
Everyone was polite. Children, especially myself, were kept in line by any adult, and we were kept away from crime.
Today, the place is filthy. All new people, and obviously, they care nothing of the streets where everyone knew one another by first and last names, and knew entire families for generations.
Streets, though periodically cleaned by city mechanical broom, are dirty.
Everything black with pollution. Children openly use foul language.
Crime is nested within the area. An uncle of mine, would take me on the tug boat with him, he was a captain, to keep me away from the streets and unsavory elements. I remember old mariners building wooden ships inside of bottles to sell. It’s all gone.
As you say, so much for progress. I terribly dislike this 21st century.
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