Don’t vote for a number

Are President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump too old to be president of the United States?

The answer to this question varies and depends on your perspective.

This perspective hinges on your expectations of America’s president.  Should he or she be able to run up steps? What about walking down the steps from Airforce One without looking down? This is a good trick.

We have to be careful about hanging a number on the maximum age to serve as president. Eighty may be too old, but maybe it’s not. I heard Billy Graham preach when he was 80, and he came on the stage talking and preaching like a dynamo. There was nothing inarticulate or incoherent about him. There are millions of 80-year-old plus people in this nation who live very active lives and have a lot to contribute to our country.

However, we have to be realistic there are millions of 80-year-old American’s who are barely alive, their health is terrible. Many cannot care for themselves let alone care for a nation. Furthermore, there are also millions of Americans between 36 and 70 who are not mentally or physically healthy enough to hold down the world’s number one job.

Each individual must be evaluated by each American. We have to look at all of the candidates circumspectly. Do they have the experience? Do they have the knowledge and skills? Are they articulate? Does the candidate demonstrate leadership skills that we need to lead this country forward to better times? Will the candidate be a strong presence on the world stage and be a peace maker and leader?

Seventy million Americans do not want a president who is going to cut Social Security or Medicare benefits. Millions of Americans over 50 do not want the Social Security retirement age raised from 67 to 70. No one in this age bracket is going to support a candidate who infers either of the changes. The full benefits age should never have been raised from 65 to 67. Millions of Americans will pay into Social Security all their lives but never make it to age 67 and thus never collect a penny. Of course, these people can collect a smaller amount if they want to retire at 62 and live on much less money. This is not a viable option for many.

Don’t vote for someone just because they are young and vigorous. Youth is attractive and often charismatic, but youth sometimes make mistakes. Don’t vote for someone just because they are 80. Hopefully they are wise and very experienced but may be on the verge of becoming too frail.  Look at the whole person. Age is a number. Look at what he or she is able to bring to the job and potentially do to help and lead our nation.

It’s a big decision and don’t make it all about a number.