Everyone knows that these 80's cartoons all tried to teach a lesson. Sometimes it was within the show itself, such as how Megatron's plans to steal energon would always fall through (because stealing is wrong, yanno). More often it was blatantly pointed out in educational segments after the actual show. Case in point, "Knowing is Half the Battle!" Or using a different fandom for an example, the lame-ass "Sailor Says" DiC add-ons after the dubbed version of our favorite anime.
And while those segments did teach valuable lessons, the author of this article argues that the more subtle lessons those shows taught have affected our entire generation, and are responsible for how we think of things even today.
(All tongue-in-cheek humor, but definitely worth a click if you've ever shouted out "I HAVE THE POWERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR" as a child.)