How long will Americans excuse Biden’s dead son sympathy ploy?
As noted by the New York Times, Biden once again evoked his deceased son Beau while addressing the families of Marines killed in the Kabul airport bombing He has been doing this for years. Even if it’s sincere, and it might me, it is a manipulative and unethical ploy. Al Gore was addicted to a similar routine, talking about his dead sister. Althouse nails the problem, writing,
“Biden needs to show people that he’s focused on the problems that beset us now and that he can do something to help us. To stand there offering up himself as an example of a person who has suffered doesn’t send a message of focus and competence. It’s a message that can be read as Hey, I’ve got problems of my own. Faced with parents of marines who’d just been killed, he said, essentially, my son died too….You might be tolerant of an old man who came up to you at your child’s funeral and wanted you to know how much he still hurts from the death of his child 6 years ago. It might be difficult, but you’d probably think something like, that poor old guy. But this poor old guy is President of the United States. He asked to be President of the United States, and by some strange twists of fate, he got what he said he wanted. And now everyone’s problems are his. He needs to act like someone who can handle all that. If he’s swallowed up in grief over his lost son — if he’s “haunted,” as the NYT headline has it — perhaps he should resign. …But it’s no wonder he’s lapsed into the misconception that “Beau” is a magic word. The press has propped him up so much — including with this “Invoking Beau” article.“
Beautiful: Althouse at her “Cruel Neutrality” best. I would only add that most elected Presidents have endured crushing tragedies before or during their Presidencies. Teddy Roosevelt had his mother and his first wife die in his home on the same night! His cousin Franklin was paralyzed at 39 by Guillain–Barré syndrome. Neither they nor the other Chief Executives with tragedies in their past repeatedly used them to political advantage.
This is yet another in the long, long, disgusting parade of hypocrisy in the wake of the political and journalistic mugging of Donald Trump for daring to defeat Hillary Clinton. Trump, was a con man, you see, and obviously not a nice guy, in contrast to Joe Biden, who is so “empathetic” that his reaction to the deaths of soldiers his ineptitude brought on is to focus on his own grief, while he shrugs off the fates of American he abandoned to face the Taliban.
5 thoughts on “POTUS Empathy Games”Hey, I’ve Got Problems Of My Own!””
“My father always wanted to be the corpse at every funeral, the bride at every wedding and the baby at every christening.”
Alice Roosevelt Longworth
His whole schtick is an act. I learned a long time ago to pay no attention to his lunch bucket Joe persona. Joe Biden is a short cut artist. He has no principles, he plagiarizes others works, he can be mean and vindictive, he lies to gain advantage and his ability to empathizes runs no deeper in him than his epidermis which he often sloughs off when he tires of you.
Beau Biden was a major in the JAG corps of the Delaware Army National Guard. He had been a prosecutor, so he was in law enforcement, and that’s partly what led him into the military at the age of 33. He was a civilian who went to a short course to make him a JAG officer. He was not an academy graduate, nor a career officer, nor a combat arms officer who later went to law school, anticipating eventually moving into civilian life and needing skills for that. He was never in danger when abroad, where his duties were legal in nature. He was trying to build up his resume for a run for Governor of Delaware.
Let’s be clear on this – Beau Biden died of glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer. It was the same cancer that killed John McCain and Ted Kennedy, and it sucks. I have lost relatives including my mom to cancer. I have lost friends to cancer. I have lost relatives of friends to cancer. I have seen what cancer does to people. I have seen what the TREATMENT for cancer does to people. The image of my grandmother lying emaciated in her bed after cancer literally sucked the life out of her, of my mother lying in the ER drained of blood because the chemotherapy made her hemorrhage to the point of death from blood loss, of my close friend Jennifer, normally a strong and intelligent lawyer, crying her heart out over the coffin of her sister Melissa, dead on Christmas 2018 at 43 from breast cancer, will never leave me. Cancer’s not something I’d wish on my worst enemy.
However, let’s also be clear – Beau’s death had nothing at all to do with his time in the military. It was a TRAGIC illness that took him far too soon, but it wasn’t falling in a gunfight with the enemy, or being shot down trying to medevac that last guy, or sacrificing himself so his compatriots would get out. Death from cancer and death in battle are two different animals. To bring the one up in the presence of families connected with the other is grossly insensitive and wrong. To do it while looking repeatedly at your watch, like you can’t wait for this to be over, either because you want to take a nap or the ice cream parlor closes at 3 on Sunday, is detached from reality.
And so’s Joe.
You beat me to it Steve-O (and did a more comprehensive job of it).
The only thing I would add is to note that Biden quite often couches references to Beau in statements like “I lost my son Beau, who served in Iraq.” or similar phrasing that seem to imply that he died in, or because of, his stent in the military. Unlike much of Joe’s babbling, I’m pretty sure that’s not accidental.