Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Victimization Of Our Elderly

by Credo (writer), I practice living in the Spirit, November 02, 2007


You know the best part of aging is that you live to reap some rewards that you have sown throughout your life, and it’s not always the kind of reward that you were expecting to reap. Most people who are reaching that age of retirement are the famous “Baby Boomers” who generally came from a large family and worked hard to help develop this country into the big republic that it is today.

People then were told to go to school work hard, get a good education, get a career and than save for your retirement, a plan that most have failed because the careers were lost to industrialization, lost to technologies that remove the needs of the people from their place of work and from the long sort after careers. They were the people who stood in massive lines during the recession hoping to get some taste of security that they were promised by the American dream, paying their taxes faithfully, sometimes working two or three jobs to make ends meet. The soldiers of the Vietnam Korean wars were composed of these who we now refer to as old; they were the people who as children stood in lines with their mothers for food stamps while their mothers told them the stories of slavery, freedom and the civil rights movement.

Unfortunately honor and wisdom never seems to seek longevity as would age and oblivion. To be mature in America means to be old and invisible, a dejected character held in a sublime prison by the youth of our communities and the uncaring society. I suspect that this is why many young people today don’t wish to get old; they’d rather die at an early age before seeing that kind of mischief perpetrated on their free spirited person.

Our society subtly understands that it must be terrible (in addition to aches and pains) to get old especially the way that most elderly folks are being treated today, in our hospitals, in nursing homes and in the streets of our city, we have shown no respect for the elderly and we make no excuses. Perhaps there are some explanations for our lack of understanding but I sure can’t find a valid reason, with the exception that maybe we have grown into an emotionally detached society and just don’t give a damn. I certainly wouldn’t want to put my parents or any of my people in a nursing home, not after knowing that they will not get the care they need unless you are there with them 24/7. Well I might as well keep them home with me, at least I know they are cared for and that they will be loved.

A thick-skinned society is what we have become, exclusively caring for the social machine and not for the people who at one time turned the screws that powered its movements and its continuation. We seem to forget where we have originated, we who are constantly coming forth from amid the buttress of the forgotten. The Golden Years? You've got to be kidding; our ambivalence about aging in the twenty-first century leaves one to ask. Is it a blessing or a curse? Because of the ingenuity of the medical industry life expectancy is prolonged, extending our lives further than previous years and most people today can expect to graduate to the stage of their elegant elders, and receive that final reward that society utilizes to punish the elderly with insincerity and disrespect. Youth has its rewards as you find that you have the world before you with no holds barred, only to be abruptlyawaken by the horrors of old age. Suddenly no one listens to what you have to say, no one cares if your feet hurts you standing on the crowed train or while you wait in the same lines that you stood in when you were younger to feed some of those same kids that now push there way past you to get to the front of the line.

All of us will be touched by the problems arising from our new longevity. The best hope is to understand the realities we face thoroughly and to prepare—as individuals and as a society. It may be much more difficult for you (the current generation of working class) than it will be for the "Baby Boomers" because the "Baby Boomers" face a system that is about to collapse, as we see more older people of retirement age awaiting social security reforms and fewer employees of our society supporting the system. The population of the elderly out number the population of their counter parts as the youth is found in jails, in gangs, and in wars searching for a method of their own destruction. Because our system has never set up any private and individual social security accounts each generation pays for the retirement of the proceeding generation.

What’s left is a social environment that preemptively abandons its youth condemning them to a uncertain future, moreover plaguing our elderly with pensions and social securities that allow them at the end of the month to eat such remedies as cat and dog food because they can’t afford any better.

“Once you get past media-fed fantasies about aging, you see that in our society, getting old means turning invisible. Lillian B. Rubin, 83, should know. Author of 11 books on an array of human predicaments, she’s now written a sharp, brazenly honest exposé for the 78 million baby boomers who will grow old over the next two decades and can reasonably expect to survive into their 90s.” “Rubin, in her early 80s and a very good writer, explores the good news/bad news about greater longevity of today's Americans.”

Lillian Rubin has eloquently described the hopes, fears, and sometimes the anguish that people feel as they negotiate their way through major social changes, such as the revolution in gender roles and sexuality and the destabilization of work-life by globalization. Now she tackles the personal and social consequences of our extended life spans. Perceptive, compassionate, and painfully honest, this book will enthrall readers of any age.”

“60 On Up: The Truth about Aging in America”
Author: Lillian B. Rubin

—Stephanie Coontz, author of The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap


“The people within our society that are classified as late adulthood have never been completely immune from abuse, neglect or assault. However, over the last few decades there has been an increasing trend for unscrupulous people that target the elderly.

As the elderly population becomes separated from their immediate families, they have become susceptible and vulnerable to victimization.

Over the years, our society began to separate the young from the elderly. Aside from the obvious trend to physically isolate our elderly, is the less obvious trend to socially isolate our elderly from mainstream society. It is almost as if we as a society sense something inherently embarrassing about our parents and grandparents. The value that was placed on our older population has increasingly diminished.

It is a sad indictment that we more often than not equate value of a person to that person's ability to be "productive" or to "contribute" to society as a whole. Often times that perceived productivity is linked purely with some output of labor or the production of some tangible object of worth. What is not taken into account is what they are capable of offering: the intangible contributions a generation removed has.

Although the trend appears to be slowly reversing, this societal devaluation of our elderly has made our parents and grandparents targets. Too often the "golden years" of one's life is now spent cooped up in assisted living facilities, huddled behind iron grills in a house (cold living accommodations), or shadowed in fear to walk the streets or answer the phone.

Victimization includes, among others, abuse and neglect at rest homes, telemarketing and other consumer scams that sometimes extracts their life’s savings, and outright violence. While our society is slow to recognize the inequality between the young and the aged, they are recognizing the unique and particular vulnerability of our elderly population. It has been said that the recognition and acceptance of a problem is 9/10’ of the solution.

How bad is the problem of elderly victimization? The statistics are frightening. This site discusses the growing diversification of abuse, neglect and violence against a population who, if recognized for their unique talents, would be a powerful boon to our lives.”

We forget our responsibly as sons, daughters, as men and women who are incline to assist our parents regardless of who they may be, because our parents have seen us up to this point in our lives (protecting us and caring for us) and our parents consist of any elderly person that you may come across. When you see them you are in the presents of God, as they were like Gods to us as children and they most certainly deserve better.

About the Writer

Credo is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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2 comments on Victimization Of Our Elderly

Log In To Vote   Score: 1
By Credo on April 19, 2011 at 08:45 am
Hey Craig B! Didn't forget Ya, late but Thanks Credo
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Log In To Vote   Score: 1
By Credo on April 19, 2011 at 08:45 am
Hey Craig B! Didn't forget Ya, late but Thanks Credo
 Report abuse

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