After learning how to say your name as a toddler, the next thing you are taught is how to express how old you are. In fact, when interacting with a toddler, your lines are not complete until you ask the “how old are you? ” question.
I could not participate in general elections until I turned 18 because it is believed that 18 is the age of political consciousness. Humorously, you can only drink or smoke responsibly after you turn 18. Even the media regulates who watches what based on age grounds. Certain programs are restricted to certain age groups.
Though, I agree that age is an important factor of consideration when it comes to some concerns but in most cases, who is fooling who?
We grow to believe that age is a very crucial determining factor for the course of our lives. This is very true in most cases. You don’t expect a five year old to be aspiring to marriage, other things being equal. But there are somethings that should actually not be determined by the age question because in some instances, age is nothing but a number.
They say you should only drink or smoke when you turn 18, but is there any special immunity that the body organs of persons above the age of 18 enjoy that those below 18 don’t? The potential damage is still same.
We prevent persons below a certain age from watching some television programs, is the effect of nude imagery less debilitating on the older person? No, the same ideas are formed and the same results obtain if adequate control measures are not taken.
During job selections, age is also considered. I agree that some job description will not fit a 45 year old or an 18 year old but sometimes, a valuable 20 year old might deliver better results than a lethargic 30 year old. When value and age are contradicting options, I think you should go for value because sometimes age is merely a number that has nothing to do with the individual’s maturity level.
So, the next time you see a teenager, don’t equate his youth with naivety and when next you see an old man, don’t equate his grey hair with wisdom because really for some persons, age is just a number.