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Social Affairs: Logan’s Run is Coming

I have been known from time to time to make a couple of rather cryptic references to something called ‘Logan’s Run’ and said that it is coming.

For those who may not know, Logan’s Run is a book, from which a movie was subsequently made, both from over three decades ago.

I haven’t read the book but I have seen the movie. Michael York played the lead role of ‘Logan’ and it is set in a dystopian future, a world in which everybody lives in domed cities because the air outside is too polluted to breath. Since places to live are limited and food is also limited due to having to live in these domed cities, nobody gets old. By Law, at thirty years of age, people have to hand themselves in for euthanasia. Put more bluntly, the state kills you at thirty to make room for somebody younger. Everybody hands themselves in willingly and smiles their way to an early death since nobody thinks for themselves anymore and simply does as the state says. Except…now and again…just occasionally, somebody decides they don’t want to die so they become a ‘runner’ and try to escape from the dome to take their chances outside. Logan is an enforcement officer whose job it is to catch runners and becomes one himself, hence the film’s title. Having made his run, Logan finds that the air outside the city is indeed quite breathable and is astonished to find old people, one of whom is played by Peter Ustinov.

The relevance of this story is remarkable - stop and think. Think about the UK today. It is an over-populated country that has a housing shortage. It has a limited ability to provide its citizens with energy and food supplies. It is run by career politicians who have never had a real job, never lived as ordinary people live – and when talking about the country generally but especially jobs and housing, I guarantee that every one of them, without exception and regardless of party or persuasion, will use two words; ‘young’ and ‘people’.

Now think about how the elderly are treated – or not treated – in hospitals and care homes. Think about the likes of Vince Cable and his remarks about the UK leaving the European Union; he said, and I quote, ‘The young have been shafted by the old.’

I saw and heard him say it on TV. He enlarged on this calculating remark sometime later with an equally calculating further comment about Brexit. Yet Cable is a man in his seventies. His comments were for those much younger than he, to show how in touch he is with the kids. Which is the point; today, everything is heavily weighted in favour of the young. In other words, the old are to be got rid of. How doesn’t really matter, just get rid of them – you can ignore their health difficulties as they age, you can leave them to rot on trolleys in hospital corridors; you can abuse them in those care homes; you can blame them for everything and you can say that they are dangerous because they are old, so turn them into criminals by accusing them of being

child sex offenders.

The old always abuse the young!

How many of those subject to the numerous witch-hunts seen since the mid-2000s were old? Most of them. How many were so old they were actually dead? Quite a few, including Jimmy Savile. The divisions between generations have grown so much since Tony Blair began to blight the country and everybody’s lives in 1997; the UK now is almost unrecognisable from what it once was. It is today a place that worships the teen and twenty-something. Age, experience, and hopefully wisdom, count for nothing. It is a country that demonizes anybody perceived to be getting on a bit.

Consider the inevitability of your next birthday – and the one after that and so on. Look ahead to the time when you get up one morning to find a wrinkle that wasn’t there yesterday; a strand of grey that appeared almost without notice in the lushness of your youthful hair colour…or the appearance of the flesh of your skull as that hair recedes and stops growing where it once did.

Think on - no matter what your youth and vigour now, no matter how cool and funky you are now…you…will get old one day. You will. You cannot avoid it, you cannot delay it, you cannot make it go away.

You WILL get old one day.

Unless…Logan’s Run is coming; and it is coming right at you.

© Kevan James 2018

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