The Norman Transcript

Opinion

November 10, 2013

To be honest, old folks are doing OK

NORMAN — Let’s have an honest conversation about Social Security.

Just kidding. What I really mean is that I want to declare my views on the matter and have everybody else nod in assent and refrain from any uncomfortable, “divisive” questions or comments.

Hey, why not? I’m just following the example of our dear leaders. One of the biggest whoppers you hear from a member of the political class is that he or she longs for an “honest conversation” about some hot-button issue.

They don’t — unless it’s one-sided. Sort of like Attorney General Eric Holder, when he said back in 2009 that America was a “nation of cowards,” unwilling to have an honest, forthright conversation about race. But then, anybody who took issue with anything he said was a racist!

That’s pretty much the way it is when it comes to calls for honest conversations about how to keep Social Security solvent for the long term. Suggest any kind of curb on the growth of this massive entitlement — not a cut, simply a modest slowing of the growth — and you are immediately painted as an elder abuser, looking to kick grandma out of her wheelchair onto the curb with nothing but a dry biscuit to eat and a moth-eaten shawl to shelter her from the freezing wind.

You are also probably the kind of person who would undermine her dignity by questioning how much she spends on lottery tickets. Oh, the humanity!

Well, as someone who entered the Medicare generation last month (on the very day Obamacare took effect — how’s that for irony?), I am going to claim a small measure of credibility on the subject of political propaganda about elders.

Yes, there are poor, sick, dependent elders. They need and depend on the entitlements that a compassionate society should, and can afford to, provide.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • Be careful out in the heat

    This week’s triple-digit temperatures are contributing to heat-related illnesses. The state health department’s Injury Prevention Service reminds Oklahomans of the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke....

    July 25, 2014

  • Get smart on crime

    It’s no secret that prison guards have become the frontline mental health case workers in Oklahoma prisons. Accessing mental health services outside of prison is tough but even harder behind the walls....

    July 25, 2014

  • James Garner will be missed

    Editor, The Transcript: Norman native son James Garner was a fine actor on stage, screen and television. I enjoyed the “Maverick” TV series and, in particular, the 1959 episode “The Strange Journey of Jenny Hill” in which the very popular ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Quite the resilient bunch

    The people of Moore are a resilient bunch. They’ve bounced back from tornadoes before, but the current renaissance may be the quickest yet. FEMA officials said it would take two years to see some sense of normalcy. That’s hardly the case....

    July 24, 2014

  • A fresh start for VA

    All of us have high hopes for the confirmation and success of Veterans Affairs Secretary nominee Robert McDonald. If confirmed — and most believe he’s a shoe-in — McDonald will take over a paralyzed system of health care that is not ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Call up National Guard

    We’re not sure it will help, but you have to hand it to Texas Gov. Rick Perry. He deployed up to 1,000 Texas National Guard troops to help secure his state’s border with Mexico this week....

    July 23, 2014

  • It’s only getting worse

    Conditions for children in Oklahoma were starting to look up for a few years, according to the annual Kids Count reports. Now we know it wasn’t getting better. The recession was impacting the rest of the country, dropping their scores....

    July 23, 2014

  • Noting a life well lived

    James Garner never intended to be a movie and television star. He just kind of lucked into it, he would tell those who asked. If you have the itch to act, get a good-paying job and spend your free time at your local community theater, he ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Recount that really matters

    Americans have been hearing a lot about Congressional elections, but there’s another one halfway around the globe that will matter far more....

    July 22, 2014

  • Runoffs get no respect

    The Aug. 26 Republican runoff election for the Cleveland County District 3 commissioner post is one of only 18 races on ballots around the state. Only two races are statewide — the Democrat contests for U.S. Senator nominee and state ...

    July 22, 2014