Cassette-encased lies of wishful thinking and willful ignorance. Bubblegum lies for a bubblegum decade that masked an increasingly chaotic and horrifying world.
This is a very good article, Ted, though I respectfully disagree. The 80s were awesome and yes, I remember them well and fondly. True "Women Empowerment" wasn't quite "a thing" yet but it was emerging. Yes, we were fed a lot of BS in song lyrics but that didn't mean we had to unthinkingly consume said BS (us Boomer women were fed BS by society, much of which didn't come to pass either). Yes, a lot of the music was insipid/sappy/downright silly though there was a lot that was actually intelligent, with worthy messages and observations. In spite of our differing views of that wonderful decade, I think this is a really well-written article.
Oh, and my sympathy on the loss of your friend.