David Hinckley, a TV and Movie critic for the New York Daily News, wrote a short piece on July 8, 2012 recognizing the depth and nostalgic role portrayed by the character Andy Taylor on the 1960’s television series “The Andy Griffith Show”. On the heels of the death of Andy Griffith, one should not be surprised that a retrospective look at one of the characters portrayed by Andy Griffith would find its way onto the pages of a well-circulated New York newspaper. What makes this retrospective look unique is the idea suggested by Hinckley that “Andy Taylor personified a life that every American…yearns periodically to embrace”. In the 1960s, as the issue of institutionalized civil rights violations was coming to the fore in America, The Andy Griffith Show told the story of a town where life was “safe and secure” according to David Hinckley. Mayberry was a town where most human flaws were marginalized, and many societal issues were solved with peaceful discussion, mutual understanding and unencumbered acceptance. As Hinckley continues, he makes the point that during its run, and for the 40 years since The Andy Griffith show first aired, most of our political and societal discussion had as its foundation the idea that America, and most of the world for that matter could solve its problems if we just returned to a simpler, more naive way of life – “if government or corporations or politicians or someone would just get out of the way”.
After a great amount of thought, it is the idea that “if …someone would just get out of the way” all would be right in the world…that balance would be restored, which gives life to the idea that it is our perception of what a good life would be like is based on a nostalgic viewpoint of a lifestyle, that in most cases has been relayed via secondary or tertiary sources, that is no longer possible because of evolution. Thus, that which must “just get out of the way” is evolution, which is impossible to stop – despite how evolution is defined, or measured.
Now that makes for good conversation.