There's a good reason people retire at 65. You've been working for well over 40 years, you've paid up your house, hopefully your kids are adults who can fend for themselves and your brain is not as sharp as it once was. If an 80 year old retired bricklayer was to go to a building site and start pontificating on what should be done, I bet he's be (politely) escorted off the site.
But it looks like we happily waive this rule for men claim to be spiritual and spend an inordinate amount of time wearing dresses and if you're a winner of some peace award, doubly so. (Another example of religion getting a pass. If I were to wear a dress on the grounds that I feel comfortable in them, I doubt I would be waved through in this society). John Paul II was still harping on about condoms even as he was edging towards the grave. And there's Archbishop Desmond Tutu, who announced last year that he was retiring from public and there was a collective sigh of relief.
It looks like we were duped. You can't get him off the headlines. Just the other day he was protesting some silly TV show in the US. Yesterday he reminded us again that he's still knocking about when he announced that he was pulling out of the leadership summit where he was scheduled to appear alongside Tony Blair. The reason: Blair's decision to invade Iraq when he was British Prime Minister which he describes an "indefensible". Of course the fact that he's getting a lot of mileage as the "principled Arch" is completely incidental.
I was looking forward to my retirement but if it means a constant streak of protests, I think I'll keep working until my last day.
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