Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Apocalypse approaches

Last week the Toronto Star newspaper ran a feature article Poor Figurehead for Elderly by one of its leading columnists. This reads as a rant around how Canada's new federal minister for the elderly, an ex-cop called Julian Fantino, is totally the wrong guy to represent the oldies amongst us. The Star is notable for being a left-leaning rag, perhaps Canada's most so, and attacking the current Conservative Prime Minister's choices is de rigeur for it. However, while claiming that seniors' needs deserve more attention, Ms Heather Mallick's piece is notable for its stereotyping, witness: "a tide of emergency hip replacements and crumbling spines approaches".

This type of alarmist rhetoric, here put into service to lambaste politicians of an alternative perspective, serves to reinforce the current penchant for highlighting the tide of impoverished aged soon to hit the world. Since many of us plan to join the aged one day and there are more of us than the current aged population, ergo the apocalypse looms ever closer. Ms Mallick asks us:" What happens to nations unprepared for a future that gerontologists and scientists have already mapped out?". As a scientist myself, I can't say I've ever found prediction to be our strong suit!

Perhaps we Boomers'll surprise her and not be a 'crumbling' metaphor for the apocalypse after all?

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