We seniors must be fascinating to researchers because it seems they’re always studying us. Here are a few things they’ve learned through Pew Research Center studies:
- With all the drama nowadays about “fake news,” and with our age-enhanced ability to sniff out lies, it would seem that we’d be excellent at discerning what’s real and what isn’t. Not so, according to a study. Five thousand participants of all ages were presented with five factual statements and five opinion statements. Turns out the younger age groups were much better at identifying both the factual and opinion news items than we were.
- Seniors are more likely to be religious, which researchers identified as meaning being part of a religious group, attending weekly services and praying daily. It’s not just in here in America — they got the same results for most of the rest of the world.
- When it comes to politics — do we even want to go there? — both the baby boomers, born 1946 to 1964, and the Silent Generation, late 1920s to 1945, are more conservative, with the Silents more staunchly conservative than the boomers.
- Although more of us are becoming technologically savvy, seniors are still 42 percent behind other age groups in the percentage of us who have cellphones or roam the Internet. Half of us say we need help setting up new devices, which is where more training classes at senior centers would come in handy.
- Those of us over the age of 50 are divorcing at a rate that has doubled during the past 30 years. For those over age 65, the rate has tripled.
If you want to read through more research results like these, go online to Pew Research Center at www.pewresearch.org and search for seniors or elderly.