Tuesday, August 10, 2004

In praise of the aged

Old people are wonderful. Today I addressed 50 something members of the Over 60s Education Group, all of them over 70. They have problems getting the young 60s members, they said. Looking out at their faces, I saw sensibility, intelligence and curiosity. People with stories to tell. People with knowledge and experience. And yet, they are somehow adrift in our society, filling time learning more, but not being used as a resource by society. It seems wasteful. For indeed, our society is ruthlessly youth-oriented and, if anything, there is a disdain for age. The young, of course, think it has nothing to do with them. It is as if the old are another species. Oh, indestructible youth, you will find out soon enough.

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