The Spectator

Letters | 16 November 2017

Also in Letters: don’t blame the SNP for the state of Scottish schools, living with disinhibited dementia and Macron’s mistake

Chairman May

Sir: Theresa May is the only politician with a mandate to lead, yet doesn’t seem capable of leading (‘Stop the rot’, 11 November). More than at any time for decades, the country needs leadership. This seems like an intractable problem but the solution is simple. Theresa May should stop trying to be both chairman and CEO and relinquish the latter job to someone with the energy, ideas and conviction she lacks. There is an obvious candidate: Michael Gove, the only member of the government who seems to relish governing and one of the leading figures in the Leave campaign. He should be made Deputy Prime Minister and given full authority for policy in three key areas: preparing for Brexit, getting houses built and shoring up Universal Credit.

May can allow him to focus on these things by taking care of administrative matters — scandals, repelling Jeremy Corbyn, keeping the CFO in line, being the public face of the government, etc. A Conservative party which wants to save itself, and properly serve the country, ought to be able to manage this.
Daniel Hopkin

Sherfield-on-Loddon, Hampshire

Dignity in dementia

Sir: I completely agree with Mary Wakefield’s article regarding dementia and disinhibited behaviour (‘The #metoo movement has an icy heart’, 11 November). My husband has frontotemporal dementia, is disinhibited and has lost the ability to read the body language of others or to pick up social clues regarding his own behaviour.

The compassionate way to react is to speak quietly but firmly, reminding the individual that his or her behaviour is not appropriate in that particular setting. That may be all that is necessary.

Even though, as Mary points out, they cannot help it, we should neither condone nor collude with it. It is important to reinforce what is socially acceptable so that those with dementia can remain living in the community in safety and with their dignity intact for as long as possible.

Already a subscriber? Log in

Keep reading with a free trial

Subscribe and get your first month of online and app access for free. After that it’s just £1 a week.

There’s no commitment, you can cancel any time.


Unlock more articles



Don't miss out

Join the conversation with other Spectator readers. Subscribe to leave a comment.

Already a subscriber? Log in