The Tennessean provided this look at the last days of former Lt. Governor John Wilder in the 105th General Assembly. The comments on the story go on for pages. Here's one comment that is a little too typical of the responses:
I for one, am glad the is gone. The bad part is ...............HE WAITED TOO LONG....................He should have retired 20 years ago. A person that old can not "think straight". Guess he liked the POWER and the money it brought.
It makes me wonder whether these people's grandfathers used to beat them or something. The fact is that the people of Senator Wilder's district continued to reelect him to office, and his colleagues until last year continued to elect him as Speaker. That doesn't make him impervious to question or attack. Far from it. I recall that he said something to the effect of "Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve" when the marriage amendment was working its way through the Legislature.
But all this talk about age is claptrap. Youth in itself does not make good legislation. I can certainly think of some younger members of the House whose bills and debate comments must originate in one of the black holes of the cosmos that Senator Wilder often alludes to. It's all right up there with "I'm not sure the country is ready for a black president" or the constant comment on their appearance that women officeholders and candidates endure from talking heads.
Policy please, and hold the prejudice.