Old is ‘In’ here in the Buckeye State


December 11, 2013

I heard a radio news report the other day that said 11.5 million people live in Ohio and something like 24 percent of them are 65 years old or older.

Hooray! We’ve finally done it!

After decades of playing second fiddle to younger men and women we are at long last in the so-called driver’s seat.

Do you want to elect a congressman or two? OK, we Ohioans can do it.

Would you like to play a major role in deciding who’s going to be the Buckeye State’s next governor? No problem-o.

After all these years the old codgers are finally being reckoned with.

It took us awhile to get to this point but by golly we finally made it.

First we have to come up with a neat slogan for our movement. Maybe something like “Older is bolder” or ,maybe, “Maturity Makes a Difference in Ohio,” except that’s a little long to fit on a tee-shirt or a campaign button.

Speaking of tee-shirts, we need to pick a color for ours. I sincerely believe the color should be gray.

It’s nice to see the tide has turned.

We older – no – make that “more mature citizens” finally have strength in numbers so let’s take advantage of it.

To promote our cause we can limp in Fourth of July parades all over the Buckeye State this year.

And so you know, there is precedent for our upcoming campaigns, during the Civil War one Union Army regiment – the 37th Iowa Volunteer Infantry – was largely and deliberately made up of old men. It was nicknamed The Graybeard Regiment.

The oldest recruit was 80; the youngest were in their 60s.

Some had served in the military before. Others hadn’t.

During their Civil War service, many died of disease and the rigors of war.

But during the conflict they had attained their goal.

The Union Army called and the men – despite their advanced ages – proudly answered that call.

Contact Bob at bbatz @woh.rr.com