SIR – In the presidential election, some candidates are hinting that they have the energy or enthusiasm to fulfil the role of Uachtarárn na hÉireann and that the present incumbent is of an age where he cannot fulfil the duties that he has carried out so well for the past seven years.
This is ageism and implies, none too subtly, that because you have reached a certain age you are no longer fit and able. We need to judge the individual and not cast labels.
Older people are not dependants, but can make valuable contributions in many facets of life.
Similarly, you may well hear a person express views or note some achievement of theirs, but on learning they are 18, we diminish their contribution by thinking they are too young.
Today, people live longer and are far more active than their parents at a certain age. We need to judge people like Michael D Higgins on his record, on his physical and mental capacities he exhibits publicly every day and his clear commitment to the work he is doing.
Ageism has no place in this election and it is a weak candidate that has to try and disparage someone else on that basis to try and improve their own standing.
For the record, I will be voting for arguably the best president this country has seen since its inception.