Kudos to Cynthia Ullmark (Outlook Sept. 26 edition) for speaking up against ageism in the community. Those with ageist attitudes show a narrow mentality, ignoring the fuller spectrum of senior facts.
Among seniors, yes, some are seriously disabled either physically or mentally, and need special care, but many are not, and the mix will always be there.
Seniors when in their youth supported then-seniors' supplementary costs by going to work and contributing to relevant taxes. Now it is the turn of current seniors to enjoy that same freedom and support.
Many seniors living in Canmore are physically active, highly educated and cultured people and are well-travelled. Many also contribute in significant ways to the greater community.
For example, seniors still pay income taxes, capital gains taxes, property taxes, sales taxes and more. Many seniors engage in a multitude of volunteer services.
Seniors support many local businesses in monetary terms. Many offer babysitting as free service for grandchildren and family pets. Many happily share interesting personal stories about their long eventful lives and accrued life wisdom.
Some elders still in our midst are veterans of wars. Their brave service to country ensured democratic freedoms for younger generations. Seniors mix with people of different ages in town, adding to a diverse community demographic.
My pet senior peeve is being familiarly addressed as "dear" or "my dear" by some cashiers in retail businesses, while addressing my same-age husband at my side as "Sir."
Doubtless meant kindly, but if the sales clerk is unknown, "dear" sounds condescending, as I have in no way lost my marbles. In business transactions, a simple "Ma'am" used to match "Sir" for the gentleman, is more classy and shows equal respect for seniors.