- 12 Apr 19
It is putting it mildly to say that the current controversy around Joe Biden is politically manufactured and motivated...
Lucy Flores and her backstage encounter with Joe Biden is finding its way to the front pages. I think what you will find with Joe Biden is he suffers from the crime of being in his seventies. And as such, he has an attitude, and approach to life and women, that sits increasingly uncomfortably with the angsty “Me Too” crowd of recent years.
Even the so-called inhaling of hair, and a kiss on the back of the head, as artfully described as it is, is not Harvey Weinstein, or dare I suggest, Kevin Spacey.
Even Ms Flores suggests, for many people, her description of events that fateful day she’s managed to stay quiet about for so many years, would not pass muster in the traditional sense of sexual harassment.
Yes, it was a bit creepy. And we must never forget the ultimate claim of the person who was on the receiving end. If it made you feel bad, uncomfortable, or uneasy then, yes, it was a bridge too far.
But equally we must look at intent. Is Biden a sexual predator? Evidence would suggest not. And there is a bit of it about in the public eye, and in that is the clue.
The other grandiose example offered up over the weekend is that at a swearing-in ceremony of Ashton Carter as Secretary of Defense – this was four years ago and Biden was VP – Biden famously stood behind Carter’s wife with his hands on her shoulders. He, at one point, whispers in her ear. This was commented on at the time.
With experience, and perhaps a bit of hindsight, you could argue it looks odd, if not creepy. It also looks like an old guy who has done that his whole life, that’s how he is with people, and not for one second would he assume to be doing anything inappropriate. The clue being it was on telly in front of the nation for all to see.
And as the articles get rolled out asking whether this is Biden’s “Me Too” moment, what is lost is the other sinister side of the equation. If you argue this is unacceptable, and he’s some sort of weird perv, ask yourself this: why now? Why the articles? Why the desperate leap from being arguably handsy to making it a “Me Too” moment?
Answer? To destroy him politically. The inhaling of hair is the end of a career, really?
Hands on shoulders in front of millions on the telly means this sexual pervert can never be a Democratic candidate, is that what this whole movement has been about?
Having rounded up a Weinstein and a Spacey, “allegedly” given they’re still working through the justice system, but having rounded up what most of us would regard as the serious end of the “Me Too” spectrum, what are we left with? The collection of old blokes who behave in 2015 they way everyone did in 1976?
This is now the crime, is it? People who haven’t kept up with social mores, and adjusted to the new norms? People who “intent wise” are innocent but not just woke enough to realise a reass¥uring hand on a shoulder is now a “Me Too” crime under modern rules of engagement?
His apology is clever, worth a read if you missed it in full. But at best an apology is about what this is worth, not his head, and not his chance at president.