Leave it To Beaver was probably the most watched and the most popular family sitcom of the late 1950s and early 1960s. And it was America’s idea of the perfect family in the perfect suburban area.
Oh there were other family sitcoms that came before. Like Father Knows Best and The Donna Reed Show. My Three Sons that came after.and in the 1970s The Brady Bunch etc. Hollywood’s depiction of America for all to see. And America eat it up.
But like nearly all shows Hollywood came up with it was make believe. A fantasy that was about as far as one could get from reality. There were no minorities depicted in any way shape or form in these shows. All the children were even more perfect than in Lake Wobegon. Both parents were kind, caring, soft spoken and understanding. Wally never picked on The Beaver and Beaver rarely got into any real trouble. The teaches and school were perfect as well. Wise and understanding and patient. And when they finally became teenagers, there was not smoking of cigarettes or pot. Not beer or loud parties. All the women and girls wore nice dresses. And nobody was gay or had abortions or got pregnant.
I have live or visited all up and down the east coast of this country. From North Eastern Ohio. The rural areas to the City of Cleveland, suburban Phillie, Naples Florida, Miami Florida and Orlando/Winter Park Florida. I have never, ever come across any family or community that came anywhere near that which was depicted in Leave it To Beaver. No schools or teachers even close to that image. This was pure fantasy. But …
There are still a are number of people in this country that believe this was real. That saw their family as The Cleavers. That still see themselves as The Cleavers. That sill see this country like these neighborhoods. Perfect white enclaves for the upper middle class. None of those misbehaved poor people or minorities.
Not just the Tea Party Right Wing but a fair number of those who consider themselves “Lefties” as well.
And they see this a disappearing and they want it back. So they have the cops arrest anyone who looks out of place. Or even try to remake the area in this image politically and economically. to keep the riff-Raff out.
A white upper middle class utopia that never existed.
Well, that’s the news from Lake Wobegon, where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.