These days, technological innovations and cultural milestones come faster than we can keep track of them. But how many of today’s seminal events will stand the test of time 20 or 30 years from now? A new survey we conducted for the National Geographic Channel finds that millions of Americans, whether they grew up in the 80s or not, believe that this decade had a lasting impact on our everyday lives. What’s more, most of the country would prefer for today’s music, movies, and TV shows to be more like those of the 1980s. However, many of the outrageous fashions that defined this decade don’t have as much of a soft spot in our hearts.
The research, conducted by National Geographic to promote its upcoming miniseries “The ’80s: The Decade That Made Us,” found that three in four Americans thought that our country was better off in the 80’s and 76% thought it was safer then, reports MSNBC. And The Los Angeles Times was quick to note that if an election between Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama were held today, 58% would vote for Reagan over Obama.
So what’s the fascination with the 80’s, anyway? “There is a natural inclination to idealize and love things that remind you of your childhood,” explains David Sirota, author of Back to Our Future, in an interview with USA Today. “People remember things fondly from their childhood because it was a simpler time, you weren’t filling out IRS forms.” And if you were curious what respondents noted was the most ‘defining’ movie of the 80’s, that would be none other than Back to the Future.