Those who made it to the end of the Oscars witnessed an act of kindness when Liza Minnelli and Lady Gaga took the stage to announce the Best Picture award.
They suddenly appeared at the side of the stage, Liza looking light and frail in a wheelchair. There was a standing ovation for her, the star of Cabaret, a classic made 50 years ago. She looked delighted with the applause, but when it was time for her to speak, she seemed overwhelmed. “I don’t understand,” she said, shuffling the cards on her lap. “I get it,” said Lady Gaga, who then paid tribute to Liza, calling her a true show biz legend. A little later, Liza faltered again and Lady Gaga leaned over and said softly, “I got you.” Liza whispered, “I know.” Lady Gaga took over the script and the show continued.
We all know that as people get older, they may not be as sharp or as strong as they used to be. Things that came easily become more difficult. Disease and time take their toll. It’s hard to watch and hard to know the best way to help. Lady Gaga understood this well.
Our culture is one that values youth and vigor over age and experience. Ageism is accepted while many other manifestations of prejudice are not. The irony is that the only thing that will happen to all of us – at least the lucky ones – is that we will all grow old.
I’m Deborah Booth and this is my point of view.