When I was younger, I feared that I might die young. One day I woke up and realized I had become too old to die young. I, like several of the candidates for President of the United States, have slipped into what I call the “red zone” of life – that time when anything can happen at any time.
Since I am in the age range of several of the leading Democrat candidates, I have given serious thought to that issue. It is almost a year until the next election. Will the septuagenarian candidates make it to election day without a trip or two to the hospital?
I posed that question because I did a mental inventory of my friends who are in the same age group. Almost every one of them has had a trip to the hospital or been diagnosed with a serious illness – not always life-threatening, but serious enough. Many required surgery – including myself.
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has already hit the emergency room with a mild heart attack. Having had one or two of those in the past, I can attest to the fact that you can return to normal life for a while – but not the life one leads when they are 40, 50 or even 60.
The 95-year-old former President Jimmy Carter said it directly. He declared that no person over the age of 80 can handle the job of President. I think he is probably right – and two of the Democrat candidates – Sanders and former Vice President Joe Biden – will enter the eighth decade of life during their potential first term in office.
Based on my own experience and general statistics, I see a very high possibility – maybe even a probability – that one or more of the older candidates will have a health scare before the election. It could change the entire trajectory of the campaigns — depending on who it is and when it might occur.
If it happens when they are a candidate, it is mitigable. If it happens after taking the oath of office, it can be a much more serious problem.
I know it is not politically correct to raise the issue of age, but as Biden often says – “come on, now. Get real”
So, there ‘tis.