Thank you to the community

Another reason to be proud of our Northwest Philadelphia community is the enthusiasm with which residents flocked to our Electronics Recycling event on March 23. People waited in line patiently. When I apologized to some, they smiled and said the crowd was a good sign that people were recycling electronics responsibly. Altogether we recycled 14 tons (29,000 pounds) of electronics!

We wish to thank Norwood-Fontbonne Academy for allowing us to use its facility for this event. This is a gesture of true cooperation with the community! We also wish to thank PAR-Recycle Works for its work to deconstruct electronics responsibly and to offer transitional employment to people returning from prison. And we wish to thank you, the community, for taking the time to make sure that toxic chemicals do not pollute our environment. We shall continue to do our best to try to make the event as efficient as possible.

Sandra Folzer, on behalf of the Environment Committee of Weavers Way Co-op


Where are your bone spurs, Donald Trump?

President Trump’s recent rant against the late Senator John McCain was downright horrible. It crossed the line of decency and respect that America’s heroes deserve.

Where are your bone spurs now, Mr. Trump? The grounds for your avoiding military service during the Vietnam War. They reside in your head, which makes you unfit to lead our country.

William Hengst
Mt. Airy


A photo caption ‘made me cringe’

The great article in the March 21 issue about Al Lassiter had a beautiful picture of his portrait of a “Woman in Floral Housecoat” with a caption that made me cringe: “one of so many people whose best days are behind them.”

Folks like me (I’m turning 75 next October) and that woman are not “the elderly.” I know that it’s a term that’s used, but it’s as inaccurate – and as demeaning – as words used about other oppressed groups; you know the ones. Elder oppression is real; the stereotypes and wrong assumptions are real. And they do harm every day.

One of the worst aspects of this culturally (there are very real aspects physically, economically, etc., which ‘t go into here) is that notion that “our best years are behind us” along with other ways of suggesting that after a certain age, life is over and we’re just waiting to die.

That’s just plain wrong. Remember Maggie Kuhn? Stop in and have a good conversation with folks at any retirement facility or our Center on the Hill. You know you’ll find that many – probably most of us – have lively minds and are embracing life in a number of ways. Many of us are still working, helping to raise or are raising grandchildren, tackling big issues around us as volunteers and leaders and more. We are engaging fully with life to the extent our bodies and other resources allow. We keep learning, keep loving, keep making goals and keep caring about the world.

Even people whose life circumstances conspire to limit us as we age resist giving up on being who we are, taking on what confronts us, offering our experience, skills, knowledge and wisdom.

And “Elder” is a great word for us, because it suggests the respect in which we deserve to be held, while acknowledging our (not small) accomplishment of living many decades.

Please give this some thought. What you bring us readers is much too fine to include this kind of mistaken and harmful stereotyping.

Ellen Deacon
Mt. Airy