Monday, 15 October 2007

Menzies Campbell Resignation

So, the inevitable has happened and Menzies Campbell has resigned as leader of the Liberal Democrats, after a series of terrible poll results and endless attacks on his leadership.

He may not have been the most inspiring political leader in history, but the constant references to his age were disgraceful. If some one was to suffer from such blatant ageism in the workplace, we would be condemning such remarks.

Would attacks on a political leader be laughed off if they referred to some one's gender or race?

I know this will be the last thing people are thinking about as the race to succeed Campbell takes off, but I do hope that some lessons will be learned from this. Because, ultimately, ageism did play a part in his downfall.


Anonymous said...

I think his age became an issue because he was, or at least appeared to be a bit doddery. It was not a simple prejudice brought on by his numerical age. It seems like his fight with cancer took a lot out of him. There is evidence that chemo-therapy can affect cognitive abilities.

Mountjoy said...

I agree with you that the ageism of the media was despicable. Some might say he was 'doddery', but that could have been said about Churchill in his later years as Prime Minister. I think the words 'statesmanlike' and 'gravitas' are more appropriate; which is what neither Chris Huhne or Nick 'Cacti Killer' Clegg have.

As a lover of cacti, I think Clegg's youthful actions should bar him from ever leading the LibDems.

Anonymous said...

Mountjoy, I think it's a bit ageist to mistakenly impute the qualities of being 'statesmanlike' and having 'gravitas' to someone purely on the grounds of their age.