A Bold Elder Is a Superhero

The leader of my Area elders’ support group asked for my thinking about how care of the environment ties logically to the issues of elders. Here are the thoughts I shared with her:

  • Elders have well-established relationships and deep spheres of influence.
  • Elders have long vision, having seen firsthand how lifestyle, consumption, definitions of wealth, and pressures of capitalism obscure or reveal reality in different political and social climates over time. This perspective is valuable, indeed crucial, now that rapid transition of society is so clearly indicated. We need the minds of elders.
  • Elders are perfectly suited to big challenges, as they have faced many of them. Elders are experts at being human.
  • An elder standing up for care of the environment commands respect and trust. Since elders are less likely to be around to see the fully ripened fruits of their efforts in this area (or the worst of the damage, if the fight isn’t undertaken), there is a built-in integrity and moral authority to their position that cuts through heavy confusions. A bold elder with attention and a mind engaged in leadership is a superhero. The older the better!
  • Looking closely at climate change brings up lots of feelings. That’s because it’s a huge contradiction to distress. To do so means not colluding with discouragement, isolation, or any of the oppressive and wrongheaded ideas about elders being less capable, valuable, or powerful. Taking this on means rapid re-emergence. Who wouldn’t want that?

Amy Kalisher
Chaplin, Connecticut, USA

Reprinted from Older and Bolder No. 7


Last modified: 2022-12-25 10:17:04+00