So, if someone has 30 years experience with something and someone else has 2 years of experience... and they have different words of advice... the advice should be weighed evenly, not giving the older person a little more benefit of the doubt? The advice of the older person should not be given higher respect than the other?
For an example: a kid of 22 has just come into an extra $5,000 and it's burning a hole in his pocket. A friend tells him to buy a certain sexy car. This friend has been a mechanic for 2 years and tells him it's a good buy. The kid's uncle, who has been a mechanic for 30 years tells him to buy the less sexy car because it's more reliable and a better deal. The kids ignore the old man's advice (and maybe even have a few choice words for him) because "they know better". Is there not something wrong with this?
This is not an actual scenario that is happening in my life, so it truly is just an example. But similar things have happened in the past. Respecting my elders (and I have *good* people in my life) and their advice has not once let me down in life.
This really is just a discussion dh and I were having a while back, as he's from the ME and over there... respect for elders is just a given. But the culture is completely different. With age, DOES come some special considerations. I was saying that I don't see that in the US anymore, but think that it was more common for those of us that are now middle-aged to have been raised that way. All of my nieces and nephews are grown now, with kids of their own. I started a family late in life, so my siblings are all grandparents, actually with grandchildren that are close to my dd's age. My observations traverse 4 generations that are currently alive in my family.
ETA: While my grandparents are gone, their siblings are not. I don't know if it's because it's ingrained in me or not, but I would absolutely give more weight to advice given by my great aunt (who's 90ish) or even my parents (70ish, 80ish) than I would to someone my/dh's age (40's and 50's). Is it a matter of "respecting elders" or just because I know she gives great advice??
As for "Ageism", I think that older people are just written off as "old and senile" even if they are not. If you want to discuss "ageism", it goes both ways. As I said, interesting discussion. Thanks for people's input. Food for thought.
For your scenario, it really would depend on the details. For example, did the 22 year old ask his uncle for advice, or is the uncle offering an unsolicited opinion. How has the uncle responded to the younger mechanic's advice? I could understand a young person having a few choice words for a relative who felt he had the right to weigh in on a decision they weren't asked to be a part of. It's part of establishing healthy boundaries when you become an adult... unfortunately, some 'elders' need you to be quite blunt with them before they'll back off and let you grow up! On the other hand, if the uncle knew his nephew was looking for a car, came across what he felt was a good deal and received a few choice words simply for passing the information on to the nephew, then the nephew would be very out of line!
Part of the issue is, our wise elders whose opinions young people respect, rarely if ever need to say "Respect your elders!" The times when a lot of younger people have heard the phrase is as a defense when they've objected to a very unwise elder offering unsolicited advice and opinions, or asserting things as fact that aren't the case. It's used in the same way as "Because I said so!" or "WhatEVER!" and roughly translates to "I'm not listening to you because your opinion doesn't matter and/or I am 100% right on this issue!" It often seems that the more a person says it, the less they actually deserve it! I believe that others' respect comes quite readily to people who are truly wise.