Once considered a somewhat derogatory term for an elderly, eccentric, or old-fashioned man, older adults the likes of Neil Young (76) and Joni Mitchell (78) are embracing “Codger Power” to achieve progressive change. A recent New York Times guest essay explores how people over 60 are not content to recede into retirement but are willing to step up and speak out about important issues like climate change, civil rights, or gun control.
Baby Boomers, who came of age in the ‘60s have stayed connected with their political roots, and rather than becoming more conservative in older age, more seniors of this era are concerned with leaving a better world for the next generation. Mitchell and Young recently pulled their music from Spotify to signal their opposition to the platform spreading COVID-19 disinformation.
Older adults who stay politically involved can not only spark social change, but because 70 percent of U.S. financial assets are held by Boomers and members of the Silent Generation, they wield considerable corporate power. Seniors who are not wealthy also have a significant contribution to make by using their time to volunteer, helping to inform voters, and getting more people to the polls. By working together across generations, more effective and lasting change can be enacted.
Being a grumpy old man on a mission might be just what society needs right now to help motivate people to take action and fight for a better world. In a recent statement published online, Young writes, “I am happy and proud to stand in solidarity with the front line health care workers who risk their lives every day to help others.”
Learn more about taking action to combat climate change, promote fair elections, and support social justice by following this link to the Elders Action Network or visit TH!RD ACT – a community of experienced Americans working to change the world for the better. Codger power may be just the thing to help you get those steps in every day while working for a cause near to your heart.
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