On Monday September 19 Japan celebrated its Keiro no Hi or “Respect for the Aged Day”, a public holiday. As the name suggests, it’s a day to honor and respect the country’s elderly citizens.
It was a day to feel good about yourself. There are times I feel like a spare part put on a shelf and forgotten. I have no wish to dwell on the past ….. Only the future. Onward.
The celebration of Japan’s longevity is also a reminder of the country’s deepening demographic woes. However, the issue of aging population is a global phenomenon.
According to recent world population reports, Japan is at 28 percent, followed by Italy at 23 percent. Finland, Portugal, and Greece are at just under 22 percent. The percentage of China’s population age 65 or above is 12 percent, 16 percent in the United States, 6 percent in India, and 3 percent in Nigeria. Southern Europe, which includes such countries Croatia, Greece, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Serbia, Slovenia and Spain, is the oldest region in the world with 21 percent of the population ages 65+.