Monday, September 10, 2007

Don't stereotype old people

The dust-up with Tony Carrillo and his fans was interesting and illuminating. The brouhaha was over his F Minus cartoon that I found degrading to the elderly. It featured an older guy facing the door and a young woman saying, "Uh...I think Grandpa needs to go out."

I had an old friend suffering from Alzheimer's who stood at the front door wanting out. He's dead now. So is his long-suffering wife who cared for him through more than a decade. She died just a few months after her husband.

And I still maintain that if you changed the grandpa character in this cartoon to a black man or a gay man, there would be organized hell to pay. That's the truth test.

Ugly, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. Ditto stereotypes.

But I don't intend to belabor our disagreement any further. Instead, I would like to focus on some of the things I learned in the exchange.

-- Carrillo has a wicked sense of humor. His rebuttal to my last blog was in writ in "large font type."
-- some of his fans are funny. One wrote me that he was not going to read my blog any more. "I mean it," he said (it was his first visit, obviously.)
-- these days, everyone has a voice. I'm an old newspaper guy accustomed to writing editorials from Olympus and letting the pieces fall where they may. It surprised me to see several hundred people land on my site via click-throughs from the cartoonist's web site.
-- sadly, the responses appeared to run mostly along generational lines in an old versus young theme. Too bad.
-- AARP. Who?

I'll close with this advice to the youngsters: Don't piss off the old people or we'll spend your inheritance.


Anonymous said...

Hi George,

Today I had lunch with one of my mentors who is celebrating his 89th birthday tomorrow. Your last line, combined with a lot my mentor told me about his estate planning (he is very wealthy and is approaching his plans in a very ethical, careful, and wise manner), got me to thinking that the ethics of estate planning might be a very interesting subject for some of your future blogs. Inherited wealth can make or ruin one's heirs... I would guess that few people approach this issue with as much insight as my mentor has.

Thanks so much for sending me the Ron Paul e-mail last week.

Dan Dailey

The South Plainsman said...

"---these days, everyone has a voice. I'm an old newspaper guy accustomed to writing editorials from Olympus and letting the pieces fall where they may...."

It's a brave new world for sure. Now, if you publish something anywhere, you can get called on it. Here is one geezer that thinks that is fabulous. The "old newspapers" had better get on board before their train leaves the station.

Anonymous said...

Now you've got me reading F minus. And I don't read the funnies!

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