Letters: The Old World
Resource type: News
The New York Times Magazine | [ View Original Source (opens in new window) ]
Ted Fishman’s article paints an unnecessarily bleak picture of the future of aging around the world, concluding that “global power rests on how willing a country is to neglect its older citizens.”
Longer life is a triumph to be celebrated, not feared. Many older adults want to work and contribute, but policies and ageism deny them that opportunity. And for those who are frail or dependent because of the limitations that can accompany age, we have a moral obligation to ensure they are provided support and care. The solution begins with a more realistic view of aging — old people are neither all greedy geezers nor all dependent and frail. Across-the-board benefit cuts or lifting of retirement ages deny the important differences of age and penalize those who cannot work while ignoring the millions who wish to remain productively engaged. Inviting older adults back into the work force through incentives rather than penalties is not only the right thing to do; it also makes good economic sense.
SHARON B. KING
Director, Aging Program, The Atlantic Philanthropies