69-year-old who identifies as being 20 years younger campaigns to have his age reduced to attract more women
Love can make people do strange things sometimes, and lust can push people to even crazier extremes.
Emile Ratelband, a 69-year-old "positivity trainer" from the Netherlands, is taking legal action to change his age so that he can be in a more "luxurious position" when it comes to scoring dates with women on Tinder. In a court case in Arnhem earlier this week, the sexagenarian argued that he should be able cut 20 years off his age so that it will better fit his identity.
His real date of birth is March 11th, 1949, but Ratelband wants to shift it up to 11 March 1969 - effectively making him 49 years old in the eyes of the law.
He's justified his argument by saying that people can legally change their names or - in the case of transgender individuals - their gender, so why can't he change his age?
"We live in a time when you can change your name and change your gender. Why can't I decide my own age?" he asked.
"When I’m 69, I am limited. If I’m 49, then I can buy a new house, drive a different car," he continued. "I can take up more work. When I’m on Tinder and it says I’m 69, I don’t get an answer. When I’m 49, with the face I have, I will be in a luxurious position."
The trouble is, Ratelband's comparison to changing one's name or legal gender is a false equivalence. Age isn't something you "feel", it's literally just a record of how long you've been around - and one of the judges in the case took issue with this.
"For whom did your parents care [during your first 20 years]? Who was that little boy then?" the judge asked.
But Ratelband’s lawyer, Jan-Hein Kuijpers, does not see that as a problem, and said that it's about time a law was introduced to allow for the "reversal" of age.
Ratelband also argued that his doctors said he had the physical body of a 45-year-old, and then went a step further by saying that he was a "young god".
Even so, he claims that he does not want to change his age out of vanity.
Last year, he posted on Facebook about how he had been looking in the mirror and realised that, since he was ageing, he wanted to do whatever he could to make the most out of his life for as long as possible. Of course, legally changing his age won't actually make him any younger, but he believes that, just by saying he's 49, he'll be able to attain things that he wouldn't get at the age of 69.
If Ratelband is allowed put his age back, however, what is to stop someone moving theirs forward? Could I just decide right now that I'm 65, claim my pension, and then live to the grand old age of 130?
Understandably, there is no explicit law in place that says Ratelband is or is not allowed to change his age, so his request is currently ongoing.