Back then America was known as the melting pot of the world. People came here and integrated into American society. Today we are segregated as politicians and parties divide us up into groups and turn us against one another in search for votes. I guess it is called diversity now. Back then as a kid born on a family farm the American dream seemed achievable, today I am not even certain that it exists. Yes, this is a completely different America, in so many thing much better and in so many other things much worse.
Government was small and Washington D.C. might as well have been on Mars for all they had to do with our daily lives. Now everything is top down, government involved in everything we do. We had no gun control, we left our homes unlocked when we went to town and left the car unlocked while in town. There were no school shootings or carjacking, there wouldn't have been any NSA spying or anything like that. Times change, so too does trust in ones own government.
I guess this is the ramblings of an old man, you did give me some things to think about.