, , ,

One nice thing about Donald Trump is that he’s obvious about his biases. Fighting bigotry is never easy, but the battle is a touch easier when everyone can see the bigotry and you don’t have to talk people into noticing it.

I face the latter problem now that I’m on the job hunt. Ageism in hiring is as hard to prove as racism, sexism, and homophobia, even if it’s not always as common or as vicious.

But it’s real. When the employment counseling firm RiseSmart helped me craft my resume and cover letter, they lowered my span of experience from “over 30 years” to “over 20 years.” Both are true, but “20 years” makes me seem younger than “30 years.” And my job counselor admitted straight out that my being 57 rather than 37 would probably add months to my job search.

Understand: As a white hetero male, I’ve had it easy due to sheer luck, and I know it — while skilled women, gays, and people of color have undeservedly lost out on jobs, raises, and promotions. I’m Jewish, so I might have faced anti-Semitism in hiring, but I haven’t seen much evidence of it. And I’m short in a world where height matters (see http://econlife.com/20…/…/height-discrimination-and-success/ and https://broadly.vice.com/…/how-height-and-weight-affect-you…); but occasional anti-height bias is trivial compared to the discrimination that other people have encountered daily.

Now that ageism has made it my turn to face everyday prejudice, I hope that I handle it with the dignity and strength that other victims of discrimination have displayed.