“An Unfortunate Juxta Position”

There was a classic example of how attitudes towards older people are slowly and surreptitiously changing in two articles in The Times on 18th September.  Two small articles on separate pages which will have gone unnoticed by most people.

Sub-editors are the Twitterati of newspapers.  They attempt to capture the eye of the reader but sometimes lose the essence of the article.

The first of these was:-

“Hawking in favour of assisted suicide”

This is another step toward the edge, in a well orchestrated campaign by Lord Faulkner in promoting and seeking public acceptance of his aim to change the law on assisted dying.  Yet another celebrity endorsement!

Stephen Hawking is a brilliant example of someone who survived being on a life support machine to go on to write “A Brief History of Time” which sold over 10 million copies.  Now at 71 he is persuaded to change his view but as a scientist he is precise with his words, he is talking about the terminally ill and their right to choose.

The second article is about elderly workers.  It is a positive report about encouragement being given to employers by Pensions Minister Steve Webb to continue to employ older people.  Even so, the debate which took place at the Liberal Democrat Annual Conference is full of reference to the elderly:-

  • “Retire and die the next day”
  • “Feeling excluded and worthless”
  • “demonized as the graph of doom”

Talk about talking yourself into an early grave – the article was written by the Chief Political correspondent, Michael Savage (my emphasis).

Then along come another sub-editor who, in an unfortunately inappropriate headline, maybe captures a portent of the future:-

“Don’t push older workers off the cliff”

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9 Responses to “An Unfortunate Juxta Position”

  1. davidwfreeman237 says:

    As I note this blog has appeared before on this site. Difficult issue to consider unles one is personnally involved: However is it the mind or the body that decrees the demise of ones soul, or then the good lord, or if your wish the grim reaper. There are no boundries to this right or wrong, just 12 honest citezens who may have to sit in judgement. One has to answer to ones self? does one NOT?

  2. by the way in passing! There goes the 33 bus, so I will have to walk to another bus stop and catch the 55, or maybe a limited stop LCT bus to central Leeds? I am not quite barmy yet! Just dipping in and out of my memory box, resting in my warm arm chair, with a decent cuppa, looking out of the window over the balcony. The birds are tweeting so am I? While I can I smile and remember those precious five minutes or moments in time with my loved ones and friends. This world is not all bad, just the ‘crap’ they print daily in the press, or express on the TV. Never mind I am here? Where are you? In cuckcoo land? Wait I hear you say the next bus is just arriving: I agree and must catch that blue bus to Menston! But alas the asylum has been pulled down, so just like the morning birds I tweet here on your web site, what a way to go? bring on the men in white coats!!!
    Can you make sense of this? I dare You???

    • john graham says:

      I will think about it for a while. I will try and get back to you before then men in white coats come to pick you up in the number 33 bus !

      • It was the Ilkley Bus run By the Ledgards Bus Compant- Old second hand buses-uncomfortable but reliable, and the ciippes always had a smile, especially if one alighted at Menston.
        By the way I have just made a cupps , fancy one?

  3. davidfreeman says:

    John I note from this weeks media (Press & TV) the grey voter must bear the costs, cast their vote and help the young. Nothing for us golden oldies, but pain and pay up. This reflexs on your very earlier bloggs on this site when we would be all individually responsible for our own salvation regarding housing HEalth and welfare and the well being of our families. All parties Conservative Liberal and Labour are after the golden Oldies. I am comming around to that popular view I paid in through hard work and taxes plus NI, so where o Where is the justice for me and my family. I am not a complete animal, and I do have a social awareness, and wish to help my fellow man: However where has my money gone and now being spent. The interest rates are ridiculous for a saver, and the largest proportion of the banking industry is controlled by the nationalise government!!! I am annoyed of MK

  4. A ramble John!!! For our visitors.
    I am on my blue Ledgards bus going towards menston, in the accompanyment of men in white coats, and my walkman playing tunes from Buddy Holly and the Crickets! A thought struck me, both generated by yesterdays media/news and that old soap story ‘Coronation Street’. The media, press are banging on about old age single persons living alone, and loneliness, out with and within a crowd of people-No one to have a chat or cuppa with, just to refreash ones Jaw bones, or activate the mind and feel part of the human race.
    ‘Coronation Street’ has an intriguing story line which I will follow concerning the characters (Married) Haley and Roy. Haley has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, and it would appear the writers of the script have or are involving the story line to include, ‘THe Future’ for Haley and to some extent Roy when he is berieved. The story so far has involved hospital care, home care and now hospice care, and the effect or choices that confront both Haley and Roy. They have not fully confront the death of Haley ( Scheduled for Christmas 2013): How ever they have started to talk about a death at the time chosen personally By Haley!
    In the earlier blogs by you and your readers John you have covered some of these aspects, of ones final days on this mortal soil, and you have tried to rationalle and compassionately to come to terms with such a decision for all concerned. It will be very interesting how on this occassion a ‘Soap Opera’ deals with such a controversial issue or issues?
    From all this thinking on my bus and my white coat companions, together with my music, I am greatful John for your concept of The EXtracare Charitable Trust of Covenrty, and their retirement villages, and the people who are invited to be resident. One does not dwell on the here after: However all of us being over 55 and adult we do care for each other, and the facilities in a typical retirement village allow us all to associate, and talk, have a cuppa and if we wish moan, and arrange large social occassions or gatherings, but on the whole talk about the good times in life both in the past and in the future to come, for which I am personnally thankfull for!!! Do not be misled there are the moments when as in a church one can talk seriously to a fellow resident about the deepest of thoughts, and if you have picked the right resident, no one else listerns: However they may understand your point of view, and respect you for that alone.

  5. R U all watching Coronation Street?? The saga continues, do u all agree with the social dialogue and interelationships portrayed? I wonder??

  6. davidwfreeman237 says:

    Strawberries, Lots of them as Roy and Haley head into a westward sunset. The storyline is now getting down to brass tacks, and Haley must now be entering the ‘palative care’ syndrome of life. It will be interesting to see the masinations of her mind (according to the script writers), that is Haley! How she comes to terms with her onsetting illness, and Roy’s ability to cope both physically and mentally.. It may be play acting? to some of us but real life to others? I am interested to see where it all goes.

    • Now I have watched to finial episode of Haley and Roy Cropper (Last Monday’s edition of Coronation Street), and the death of Haley (with Roy in attendance), and the question of his death and the choosing of departure a right for each and every one of us? Does the Human Rights Act allow us to choose our destination, or is it a sacrosanct oath to preserve life? And to whom does the Human Rights Act Apply? Is it a society or an individual (The sufferer or the perpetrator?) per. say.
      There is I feel there is no correct answer to fit all occasions. Age of those involved in the personal death, and the age and life’s experience of those left behind needs to considered, examined by ones fellow man/woman/family, and maybe judged by society in a court of some kind, by a judge and jury (Not just a judge).
      To take death in its kindest form, when someone/person has lived a good life three score years and ten and plus, then death is inevitable, and respect and peace and comfort in ones passing is a wish one may considered for that individual.
      In the younger person death is I feel never come to terms with, and one all ways wishes that the younger person had maybe had had a broader experiences of happiness and sorrow and a fuller life.
      To those who have had a life time’s fight with disease and or debilitating illness, then who is the judge of that person, and whom would one wish to castigate, if in a moment of lucidity the actual suffer had made a choice of death?
      Then one has the near death or actual death wish of suicide, and for whatever reason, who can shoulder not the guilt of that action, but the causes that lead to that action(s)?
      I have no panacea and I do not wish to rule on the time and timings of death, except to say it is very personal, and as a society I or my peers may wish to be judged by a Judge and (12 good men/woman and true ) jury.
      There are times for death, and the timing of death: however this should not in my opinion be made a high street pharmacy (metaphorically speaking), and no more that should the accomplices’ to any act of death be made a scape goat: It is a fine line to tread!
      I have ignored here the act of malicious murder with intent.

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