Margaret Thatcher had dementia. She had it for longer than she was prime minister. Yet few of her obituaries mention it or "regard it as a meaningful part of her story," complains USA Today columnist Michael Wolff, whose own mother died at the same age as Thatcher fairly recently—and also battled with dementia. But Thatcher's dementia "is more relevant to current societal issues and costs than her concerns with the poll tax or the miners' union."
Dementia is "the single greatest physical scourge of our time," yet the media brushes it aside, acting as though Thatcher simply slid graciously from view. If you've seen dementia up close, you know these "negative space characterizations of the disease are as opposite to reality as war is to peace." This should be seen as her "ultimate, signature fight. Even her detractors ought to be humbled by her fate. Nobody can deserve to die like this. Yet many of us will," because no one is willing to tell this story. Click for Wolff's full column.