Dian Sparling, the 71-year-old midwife, told NPR that she was “taken aback” by the top headline, so it was changed.
NPR ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos writes:
[Reporter Ina] Jaffe added this honest question: What do you call people today past 60 or 70, or even 80 or 90?
What I find in reaching out to experts is, well, a lot of disagreement over what term to use. But “elderly” was decidedly taboo.
UPDATE — Erik Wemple asks: “What if you alight on a ‘home for the elderly,’ then proceed to interview a resident of that home? Are you, via the associative property, calling the interviewee ‘elderly’? Would that draw fire from your ombudsman?”