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Joe Biden is still catching issues for his comment about working with segregationist politicians in the past.

Cory Booker stoked the fire by demanding an apology, and now more Democrats are coming out and saying to let this go. They’re right.

The sad fact is that during Biden’s time on the Hill, there were open racists in office who would periodically say and do things that would cause outrage today. Back then, it typically drew some outrage, but mostly a lot of eye-rolling. Biden didn’t like dealing with them, but like voters often do at the ballot box, he proverbially held his nose and did what needed to be done.

Why did Biden choose to talk about segregationists?

In the highly divisive political climate we’re facing today, it’s not smart to start casting shade on the opposition in situations like Biden found himself in. He’s ostensibly courting independents, so his best route to proving he has a history of being able to deal with people he disagrees with ideologically is to point out people who everyone should loathe now. Thankfully, there wasn’t a contingent of Neo-Nazis on the floor during his time on the Hill, so the next objectively reprehensible class of politicians would logically be segregationists.

English can be a difficult language to comprehend. Unfortunately, it appears that we have at least a few people holding public office who are more interested in engaging in outrage and indignation, than actually bothering to comprehend what someone says.

English is hard.

Biden did not say he agreed with segregationists on law or policy, period, full stop. On the contrary, he was saying that he considered those people reprehensible. So, Biden is actually on the same side as Cory Booker in that he has zero desire to see any racist policies or laws adopted or passed by our government. If anyone cannot comprehend that the whole point of this exercise was for Biden to point out that he can work with people even when he absolutely disagrees with them, we have a problem. Sadly, Cornel West, professor at Harvard, proved that even the academic class might need to brush up on their communication and language skills, based on his appearance on Anderson Cooper’s show.

If it wasn’t for the hyper-sensitivity that has been running rampant lately, perhaps someone would have taken Biden’s comment to a far more logical conclusion. Instead of causing outrage among black Democrats, he should have been facing ire from the Republicans because the statement ostensibly compares them to the evil segregationists. Honestly, given some of the racist rhetoric we’ve heard over the past couple years, that comparison makes far more sense than what some Democrats seem to think – that Biden was being insensitive to them just by uttering the word “segregationist”.

Again, Biden isn’t supporting racist policies, and is hoping to run against a president who has parlayed racism into a fiercely loyal base. Biden was comparing the blind followers of Trump to the segregationists he had to endure on the Hill. Keep the knee jerk reactions in check, please. Also, please start thinking about improving education, especially in English. Comprehension skills definitely need work.


Liz Harrison

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