Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Hockey Star Heads Home to be with Grandfather

It’s not just politicians like Barack Obama that are taking some time out to visit with their ailing grandparents. Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitols, last year’s most valuable player in the National Hockey League left the team yesterday so that he could fly home to Moscow to be with his grandfather, Nikolay Kabayev. Ovechkin’s grandfather helped care for him when he was young and it’s touching to hear that he wants to be there beside him now that he is ill.

Ovechkin has played in a remarkable 203 straight games for the Capitols (something I can really appreciate as the spouse of a hockey enthusiast). So while Capitols missed Ovechkin on the ice at last night’s game, I’m sure everyone understood how important it was for him to be with his grandfather. At Generations United we send our sympathies to Ovechkin and his family during this difficult time

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Response to Samuelson

In yesterday’s Washington Post Robert Samuelson addressed a memo to young voters and asked them to get angry because they are supposedly being duped by an alliance of senior voters and the two presidential campaigns in an effort to ignore them and their issues. Samuelson has long been banging the drum for entitlement and budget reform, and he often raises legitimate questions, but his solutions and tactics are misplaced and wrongheaded.

There’s a good reason why young voters aren’t angry with seniors (much to Samuelson’s dismay); after all, they care about their own parents and grandparents and they understand that they too will age. Further, he narrowly lays the blame of the budget deficit on older adults. He omits the cost of tax expenditures, bail outs, two wars, and the inefficiencies in our health system.

Older Americans do care about youth and how they will leave the country for them. It’s the reason we’ve seen such an up rise in senior civic engagement, especially with children and youth. GU’s Seniors4Kids is a perfect example of elders selflessly advocating for a brighter beginning for a younger generation. If you have a moment, please leave a comment on the Washington Post and remind Samuelson that we are all in this together, both young and old and the only way to solve our challenges, which are many, is to work together. Click here for the article and here to leave a comment.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

In Honor of a Grandmother

Last night on Anderson Cooper there was one really poignant moment when Joe Madison, a radio host, was making a point about something else and he stopped in the middle of what he was saying and added:

“And I'd like to say about grandparents. I was reared by Betty Stone and Jim Stone, my grandparents. And Barack Obama has no choice; he has to go to his grandmother's side. I think it's a smart thing to do. If he didn't, he'd probably regret it the rest of his life.”

Indeed. Having just lost my father, I cherish the time this summer when I put my life on hold and went to be with him. I would not have missed the last days with my last parent for anything.

And we know how important Senator Obama’s grandmother is to him. When he accepted the nomination he said...”And when I hear a woman talk about the difficulties of starting her own business or making her way in the world, I think about my grandmother, who worked her way up from the secretarial pool to middle management, despite years of being passed over for promotions because she was a woman.

She's the one who taught me about hard work. She's the one who put off buying a new car or a new dress for herself so that I could have a better life. She poured everything she had into me. And although she can no longer travel, I know that she's watching tonight and that tonight is her night, as well.”

At Generations United we salute the Senator’s decision to take time away from his most important race to acknowledge what is truly most important...the love and sacrifice of a grandmother who was there when he needed her.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

President Signs Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008

I am excited to hear that yesterday afternoon President Bush signed the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008. This is a wonderful accomplishment!

Passing legislation is never easy and this was no exception. A very special thank you to all the grandparent and other relative caregivers and children who shared their stories with lawmakers and staff. Also, thank you to our amazing policy team for their excellent work in particular, Jaia Peterson Lent and Terence Kane.

Please stay tuned to our website for more information about all the benefits of the new law and how you can help implement it in your state and community.