Have you ever had the experience of catching yourself out in prejudiced thinking? I bet you have.
It happened to me the other day, and I’m a little reluctant to share it with you, but here goes!
You’ve probably read that Hillary Clinton was in hospital recently with a blood clot. This prompted a lot of speculation in the news media about her chances of success if she runs again for President in the 2016 election, as she’s front-runner for nomination.
I hadn’t realised she was seen as front runner. As soon as I read that speculation, I found myself doing some surprised calculations. She’d be 69 if she was elected, 77 by the end of her second term, assuming she gained a second term.
“Surely that’s too old” I found myself thinking.
The inner cringe
And then I cringed with embarrassment. Me. The one who writes about women aging with grace and gusto. Who celebrates the abilities of women at any age. Who knows that Grandma Moses didn’t start painting until she was in her seventies, that Laura Ingalls Wilder started writing in her forties and didn’t publish her famous “Little House” books until she was in her sixties, that political activist Doris Haddock (Granny D) walked 3,200 miles across the US when she was in her 90s to advocate for campaign finance reform.
I know, and know of, dozens of gifted, strong women in their 60s, 70s 80s and beyond.
So just want to say sorry Hillz, hope you run, and hope you win.