Best Retirement Home Ever (for Once-Great Racehorses)

Just like the rest of us, the magnificent thoroughbreds that will be running in the Kentucky Derby eventually will grow old. But unlike us, racehorses don’t have Social Security, Medicare and 401(k) plans to rely on in their retirement years, and they don’t have control over their own fate. In the past, tragically, after their breeding days were over, even some great champions such as 1986 Derby winner Ferdinand have ended their lives in foreign slaughterhouses. But fortunately, thanks to the dedication of …

When Do ‘Preferences’ for Housing Programs Amount to Discrimination?

Many communities have affordable housing programs designed especially for older people on fixed incomes. The idea is to allow them to maintain a good quality of life in a safe, welcoming environment. But what if you have to be a resident of the community to qualify for affordable housing – and the community happens to be 85 percent white? Does that amount to discrimination based on race? >> Sign up for the AARP Money newsletter Yes, the U.S. Justice Department argues …

Franklin McCain: He Integrated Woolworth’s Lunch Counter

On the afternoon of Feb. 1, 1960, 19-year-old Franklin McCain – accompanied by David Richmond, Joseph McNeil, and Ezell Blair Jr., three of his North Carolina A&T classmates – walked into an F.W. Woolworth store in Greensboro, N.C. After buying a few small items, he and the others sat down at the lunch counter. When they tried to order coffee, the white waitress refused them. “We don’t serve colored here,” she explained, according to a contemporary New York Times account. “I …

Oldest Woman in NYC Marathon Finishes Race, Dies the Next Day

At 86, distance runner Joy Johnson was a remarkable athlete. A retired gym teacher from the San Jose area who took up jogging at age 56, Johnson competed in scores of races around the country and amassed a string of 25 consecutive finishes in the New York City Marathon – one of the most legendary streaks in the history of recreational running. Two years ago, at 84, she became the oldest finisher ever in that event, clocking a time of …

When Life’s Race Nears the End

It was quite a contrast. When Cinelli and I married in 1949 I was 20 years old and could run like the wind. Life was a thunder clap back then and my very existence was packaged in a race to a goal I never bothered to define. There was a kind of glory to the rush that trailed fire and dust; we were young and strong and loud, raucous children of a hurricane that never stopped forming. That is no …

Do You Think the Justice System Is Biased? Depends on Your Age

Is there bias in the U.S. criminal justice system? Unpublished data from a recent Gallup poll point up marked differences in views divided not only by race but also by age. Forty-one percent of 18- to 29-year-olds thought the justice system was biased against blacks. The number dropped to 32 percent for 50- to 64-year-olds and to 26 percent for age 65 and older. (That 15 percentage point difference between the oldest and youngest generations has narrowed by 21 points …