Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Generation Gab

A couple of days ago, we were talking about the need to remain relevant for younger readers. How about accuracy concerning older generations?

Some people are blurring their labels, and, strangely, a few are trying to latch onto the World War II generation to make their political points.

I'm beginning to get tired of what I used to think of as Tom Brokaw's brilliant title for a book.

I remember seeing a woman screaming at one of the town halls about her insurance coverage and seeming to say that her father was a World War II "greatest generation" veteran. As if his veteran status had accrued to her.

Now,from Michael Steele's op-ed piece, we get this sentence: "That is why Republicans support a Seniors' Health Care Bill of Rights, which we are introducing today, to ensure that our greatest generation will receive access to quality health care."

Except that seniors these days include Baby Boomers, you know, people like Bob Dylan, Tom Hayden and Arlo Guthrie. Not to mention longtime lefty activists like Ramsey Clark and Pete Seeger. I'm sure Steele doesn't have them in mind when he's identifying senior citizens as members of the greatest generation. And, on a side note, I wonder why no one ever points to the courage of Vietnam veterans when they're trying to make a political point about veterans' sacrifice and heroism. Wrong generation? Too soon to mention them as seniors? Hardly. Lots are collecting Social Security by now.

I'll leave the accuracy of facts in an op-ed piece to political columnists and bloggers, who have, in fact, been having a field day with it.

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