The U.S. Supreme Court is about to enter Day Two of oral arguments regarding a civil rights issue with sweeping moral, religious and social overtones: Can members of the same sex get married?
On Tuesday, Aerosmith rocker Steven Tyler turned 65. That's older than five of the nine justices sitting on the U.S. Supreme Court.
You may ask: what's your point, my dear? I'll tell you in a minute but know that the front-and-center coverage of the court this week has them in my sphere of consciousness more than usual...and so is age and ability.
Back in the previous century, the U.S. Supreme Court used to be called the "Nine Old Men." Aside from the fact that there are three women on the court now so it can't really apply, and Baby Boomers are well into their 60s, even calling the Supremes the "Nine Old People" just doesn't cut it with our generation.
Baby Boomers are redefining what is considered "old," as 60 is the new 40 and we still rock on.
Now consider this as well.
The average age for the four living members of The Rolling Stones is about two years older than theSupremes. Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood have an average age of 68 years and 297 days, while the Supreme Court justices' average is 66 years and 364 days.
Now, I am not in any way being disrespectful of the U.S. Supreme Court. I am just thinking about one generation about to pass judgment on an issue that really came to the forefront when another generation started taking a stand.
True, there are Baby Boomers who are in same-sex relationships but most are a bit younger. At least, that's what I see in the wide-ranging media coverage of the issue.
Hey, another Baby Boomer -- Julia Pierson -- was just tapped by President Obama to lead the U.S. Secret Service. She's 53.
Of course, the seat was vacant after previous director Mark Sullivan retired after doing a "walk of shame" in testimony before Congress because Secret Service agents were found to be splitting their time between protecting the President and prostitutes when the President was in Cartagena, Colombia nearly a year ago.
I read somewhere about the Cartagena debacle that the Secret Service, "the agency known best for dark sunglasses, ear pieces and stopwatch discipline, had a blush-worthy image problem."
But then again, in the past 20 years, the U.S. has seen many female "firsts." There was a U.S. attorney general (Janet Reno, 1993); a secretary of State (Madeleine Albright, 1996); a national security adviser (Condoleezza Rice, 2001; also become secretary of State, 2005); and speaker of the House of Representatives (Nancy Pelosi, 2007), just to name a few.
So Pierson is no surprise nor is she something to be marveled at. She's just a natural progression.
Which really brings me to my main thought. While there is a world of difference between deciding an issue on civil rights for the entire nation and performing a concert for fans, the collective ages are about the same.
See, we often equate age with wisdom, rightly or wrongly. Age should not -- and does not -- exist as a qualifier for either the Supremes or a rock band's appeal. Age is just a number. Anyone who says they are "too old" for something in their 60s needs to think again.