A real-life, modern hero has come to the defense of a politician who in recent times has endured some amazingly cruel taunting over a condition that once plagued him as a child.
Joe Biden once suffered from a debilitating stutter. His political foes are taking aim at him over if, mocking a condition he fought hard to overcome. The latest is Lara Trump, wife of Eric Trump, the son of the current president of the United States.
Lara Trump thought it was clever to implore the former vice president to “get it out,” to finish whatever thought he sought to make. Her crass quip drew scattered laughter from the crowd.
Now comes Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, the pilot who landed that jetliner full of passengers on the Hudson River, to Biden’s defense. Sully wrote in a New York Times op-ed essay that he, too, suffered from stuttering while growing up in Denison, Texas. What’s more, he endured bullying, taunting as a child. He wrote that those memories rushed back when he heard about Lara Trump’s taunt.
Sully wrote: This culture of cruelty is what drives decent people from public service, and what makes millions of Americans recoil from politics, and even from participating in our democracy.
Read his essay here.
I have written already about how I feel Joe Biden’s pain. I, too, stuttered as a child and had to endure taunts from junior high school and high school “friends” who found it funny that I couldn’t get certain words out of my mouth. I worked through it all by myself. I got no help.
But my point is that Joe Biden doesn’t deserve to be mocked. He deserves to be honored for the courage he showed in whipping the problem … and in talking openly about it as a prominent American politician. Those who mock him should salute him.