Letters to the Editor: No, Biden isn’t too old. But his approach is too old-fashioned

President Biden exits a doorway outside.
President Biden arrives in Hanoi on Sept. 10.
(Minh Hoang / Associated Press)

To the editor: Columnist Doyle McManus cites the observation that in focus groups, “voters raise the issue of Biden’s age without being prompted.” (“Voters think Biden’s too old to run again. Can he persuade them that they’re wrong?” Sept. 10)

However, “prompts” are everywhere in the media. Even McManus includes only one sentence, buried in the middle of his lengthy article, to document President Biden’s success in growing the economy and slowing inflation.

Biden is old, but so is former President Trump. The difference is that Biden is also oddly old-fashioned.


Biden is using political tactics from the 20th century. He expected that his quiet horse trading of 53 years with other lawmakers would reward him now with returned favors.

Instead, Biden was caught flat-footed by the lockstep Republican stonewall.

I voted for Biden in order to contain the push toward autocracy. He is mentally up for the job and has an unmatched historical skill set. But he must update his approach. In the age of social media, the strong and silent type leaves voters feeling abandoned. Action is essential.

Charmaine Curtis Jacobs, Goleta, Calif.


To the editor: There are a couple of interesting facts in the discussion of Biden’s age and how old is too old.

First, there’s all the media coverage about Biden’s age, but there is no mention that the election is not about age, but about democracy versus fascism. Why is that? Is it because raising the specter of electing a fascist is not something the media want to cover? This is not as easy to talk about as age.

The other ignored fact is that even if something happens to Biden, there is a vice president who would take over. There are no “vice senators” to step in if the senator is incapacitated, but the presidency takes that into account.


Let’s start discussing issues that matter and not the fluff that attempts to pass for something of importance.

Les Hartzman, Los Angeles


To the editor: Like the president, I was born in 1942. What I’ve come to understanding is that my 80s are so different than what I thought they’d be when I was in my 40s, 50s or even 60s.

Age slows the body down; I no longer run or even jog. On the other hand, living four-score years has enriched my thinking.

I have come to recognize that the “two sides” I saw when younger are often best understood as two sides of the same coin. Years of living can bring some losses but also so many gains.

Evolution is reflected in most animal species by a life expectancy that ends shortly after reproductive years. That’s not true of the human specie. Clearly there is a real value in the years of life and experience.


Stalky Lehman, Orange


To the editor: Sometimes, you need to quit before you need to quit.

Leigh Freedman, Cypress