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What We're Following Today January 16, 2020

“OK Boomer” made it into the Supreme Court Halls

A case dealing with age discrimination has landed itself in the halls of the Supreme Court. This little article talks about how Chief Justice Robert’s directed a question at Attorney Roman Martinez about whether or not someone stating, “OK Boomer” would be actionable.

It will be interesting to see what the courts decide as there are elements of free speech at play. I’m not a fan of people dismissing one another in this way, but at the same time I’m even less of a fan of trying to legislate thought and speech versus attempting to change a mindset and having someone choose to walk a more righteous path of discourse and debate.

The other thing is whether or not the statement represents a systematic discrimination or the discrimination of one person working in the system - identifying where the true accountability lies is critical in all law. If systemic, the penalties should and would be huge, but justice is more restricted if it is something that the individual is responsible for. At any rate, it is interesting to see how quickly the phrase “OK Boomer” has been raised up in today’s lexicon.

OK Boomer On the Today Show

My wife shared with me that she heard an interesting story on the Today Show where OK Boomer was on center stage again. They had an intergenerational theater group that has been created to help forge connections and relationships across generational divides…sound familiar? When we get together, it’s amazing how much we can accomplish.

Mind The Gap - an organization geared towards using theater to help people connect and interact. With interactions like these and like the events we put on at Generation Bridge, we will all realize that judgment is held with a higher authority and something we need to put aside because the “us” versus “they” mentality will only create blockades to meaningful relationships that get started by forming individual connections.

Harmful Effects of Ageism Worldwide

This story on Yale’s website illustrates the health impact of ageism in society. Becca Levy, a Yale professor was asked by the World Health Organization to lead an analysis of global data in its newly launched Global Campaign to Combat Ageism. She did a meta analysis of 422 studies globally in order to address the topic of ageism globally.

They looked at things like structural, healthcare, and or individual level ageism examples and their impact on the individual. Here’s a quote from the article, “Evidence of denied access to health care treatments was found in 85% of all relevant studies. In 92% of the international studies of health care students and professionals, there were indications of ageism in medical decisions, and this trend has increased over time, said the researchers.”

Clearly there are elements of ageism that could impact the care we receive as we get older - are people paying attention to symptoms the same way? Are we listening as closely to an elder? What other things might we do / or what other ways might we act that fly contrary to our better selves?

The other side of this is that we make sure we police our own actions with others, BUT that we also stand up for ourselves in the doctor’s office and more. No one knows our bodies like we do and we have a need to feel empowered to advocate on our own behalf. And as caregivers, we also need to feel empowered to advocate for our loved ones.

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