The Road to Recovery Isn’t Paved With the Bodies of America’s Seniors

I must confess, the absolute last thing I predicted for this year was the rise of the Logan’s Run right. Logan’s Run, for those who don’t remember, was a 1976 movie that imagined the 23rd century as a hedonist’s paradise of pleasure and plenty, but with an important catch. This future was only for the young. When you turn 30, your time is up. Time to die. You can watch the trailer in all of its 1970s schlocky glory here:

Two Sundays ago I wrote an extended piece about the sacred Christian duty to care for America’s senior citizens. I’d already seen signs online that some right-wing voices were minimizing the severity of COVID-19 because it was disproportionately dangerous for the elderly, and I was concerned that some of the media figures who senior citizens trust most were peddling outright disinformation to a vulnerable population.

Since that piece, public discourse has taken an odd and troubling turn. As the scale of the economic damage from the COVID-19 virus becomes clear (there were 3.3 million jobless claims filed last week, the most ever) more voices have started to argue that senior citizens should be prepared to sacrifice their health and even their lives to reopen the economy. Here, for example, was the lieutenant governor of Texas, Dan Patrick, on one of the most popular cable news programs in the United States arguing that seniors should be willing “take a chance” with their own lives to put the economy back to work:

Lest you think this is an outlier, Fox’s Brit Hume followed up on the same show and called Patrick’s view “entirely reasonable.” Glenn Beck then declared that he’d “rather die than kill the country.” 

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