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Older generation mobilizing in climate fight

Akaya Windwood, lead adviser for the group Third Act, in her garden and home in Oakland, Calif.Jan Sturmann for the Boston Globe

Elders have already made a difference in Massachusetts

Re “ ‘We have done more damage to the planet than any other generation:’ With Third Act, boomers mobilize again, this time for the climate and voting rights” (Page A1, Feb. 24): I appreciate the story by Robert Weisman. In Massachusetts, elders have been among the many people leading the fight for effective climate and environmental justice legislation for the last few years. Just last March, the governor signed into law the climate bill known as the 2050 Roadmap. This bill was passed with the efforts of Elders Climate Action, with its 1,000 Massachusetts members working alongside 350 Mass, Mothers Out Front, the League of Women Voters, and other groups.


Elders have a unique perspective as lobbyists: concern for the well-being of future generations. Lawmakers pay attention to what we say because they respect our perspective, and they know we vote. We take the time to get educated on the science of climate change and the various legislation. We also show up on Beacon Hill during business hours. And when we show up on protest lines, our age shows, and it matters.

Rick Lent


The writer is on the leadership team of Elders Climate Action.

Let’s not blame ourselves when fossil fuel industry is the culprit

It was painful to see the Globe front-page headline placing primary responsibility for global warming on older adults with the quote “We have done more damage to the planet than any other generation.” This age bias obscures the role of the fossil fuel industry, which is guilty of the greatest amount of harm and of a long, expensively funded cover-up of the facts. The industry chiefs must be relishing all this cohort scapegoating.

Robert Weisman’s well-sourced article reports that older adults are becoming more active in the movement. It should go without saying that many older adults are urgently active. Responsible people of every age and in every walk of life are mobilizing. Irresponsible people of all ages are still buying monster cars and McMansions. Republicans of all ages are obstructing President Biden’s Build Back Better bill, which could actually help prevent the destruction of the planet.


So, it is also painful to see older adults themselves making such a dangerously absurd statement as the one quoted in the headline. Age-blaming is sinister. It only helps the wicked.

Margaret M. Gullette


The writer is the author of “Ending Ageism, or How Not to Shoot Old People.”