Who should have the main responsibility for taking care of the elderly? The national government? The local community? Family members? Religious organizations?
As the proliferation of senior citizens in China has appeared in the last few decades, one of the biggest problem in public lies on the focus that who is expected to have the chief responsibility for taking care of the elderly. The government, undoubtedly, should be taken for granted in terms of coping with the aged issues. However, no story about the gray generation becomes complete without the involvements of community, family, and the senior themselves since those who are under retirements have made significant contributions to the days of our lives now young people are enjoying. The aging population, as a social problem, consequently, is supposed to be tackled by multi-powers.
It is Chinese government that has played a crucial role in the macroscopic management over the seeming lion share of senior citizens. The first rights protection law of the elderly in China was promulgated in 1996; since then, the shuffle of China’s age structure has gone through a great change. Whereas the Chinese filial responsibility law only states general principles, most of the aged people prefer to be ignored by their children rather than bring a lawsuit directly to the People’s Court. Owing to the provisions are so general that it is considered frustrated to protect the elderly parents’ rights effectively. Therefore, it is time for the Chinese government to intensify its part of leadership in order to ensure the well-organized management of the aging population.
Distinguished from western countries, China armed with socialist core values is meant to provide more public institutional cares for the older generation and meanwhile to encourage personal pension businesses. This way, the old-age care industry can be infused with new blood. However, the key that previously put the government between a rock and a hard place has been found in which how to transform aging pressures into human resources. There is no denying that the elderly are sophisticated. So, is it necessary to build a flexible retirement system? After all, when the population of the gray trumps the green’s, it is almost impossible to impose the Chinese dream, the great rejuvenation only on the younger generations.
The community is vital of importance in the gray era as well, not only because it accommodates the great number of older people but for a competent community can deal with most of the problems in the gray generation, such as convenient medical service, fitness center, the club for the elderly etc. While their children are busy working outside, the elderly can be taken good care of inside.
When it comes to the elderly in rural areas which are usually taken as challengeable during the elderly management since many young people become more likely to haunt jobs and even settle down in cities; while there will be less time and care they can devote to their parents. Fortunately, the Communist Party, as a governing party, is responsible for all of these, and which has taken powerful actions in developing welfares especially in rural areas, which now are mainly achieved by supporting local communities to look after the older people and much more will be promised in the future.
Family Is Always Here
Older people are in strong need of attention along with affection. The truth of this matter is that each of us has some degree of responsibility for the welfare of our older citizens, and ourselves as we age. Currently, the sinology becomes a hit again all around the country and it shows that, as we all know, providing tender loving care to our senior citizens especially to our parents is a sign of respect and gratitude.
For one thing, government sectors and communities should be responsible for facilitating in providing optimum cares to our older people. Yet, for another, it is not accorded with virtue and morality even legislation to be such relentless buck-passers for every son and daughter, since family members or close relatives should be the ones in taking care their old folks. In other words, sending their parents to pension care institutes is not identical as putting them into a safe box. And there shouldn’t be any excuse for a family to refuse to take care of their parents or even grandparents. Some things may make sense if there are temporarily serious cognitive or emotional problems with their parents. On the other hand, if they simply have an aging parent with physical limitations, there are few, if any, valid reasons for hiding information or becoming patronizing. In cases such as those, it requires a family effort to ensure that the family does not implode under the pressure. Unexceptionally, it is not so many adults as adolescents that should be given this indispensable lesson of filial duties for the good in the long run.
Look to the Gray
With all focus landing on the gray generation, it seems that they have been lifted at the top of the country. Beyond a shadow of doubt, the gray generation should also be guided so as to be engaged in a good management. Presuming or taking advantages of one’s seniority can be evitable as long as the government, the community, and each family work together until reach an agreement on the building of age-friendly environment. As for the elderly, they should also take responsibilities for themselves and try to meet the expectations from the society rather than simply lean on communal services.
In addition, with the rising divorce rate, it will never be too earlier for the aged generation to draw a comprehensive retirement plan ahead. Likewise, they should know it in time that what kinds of rights they can be entitled.
Only when China with powerful economic capabilities traces out a vision of pension schemes, can all districts and departments, accordingly, carry out and develop their elder cares more efficiently. Only when the gray generation gets attached enough importance to, can they enjoy themselves in peaceful years, can the Chinese dream be well realized, and can the ring on them turn golden from silver.