The recent dust-up involving a former White House press flack and a former U.S. vice president brings to mind a reason I have much empathy for the ex-VP.
Joe Biden endured a stuttering problem as a boy. He powered through it. He mentioned it during the Democratic presidential candidate joint appearance the other night, eliciting a stupidly snarky response from Sarah Huckabee Sanders … who later apologized for the way she responded to Biden’s acknowledgement.
I find myself, thus, feeling a bit of empathy for Biden. Why? I, too, endured a stuttering problem as a boy. It wasn’t a debilitating stutter. I was able to communicate most of the time. Indeed, I was able to do so almost all the time. Certain sounds, though, did get in the way. The sound of the letter “k,” for instance, at the beginning of certain words is an example of that.
Think of the hideousness of that example. My last name begins with that sound. Therein lies the source of my embarrassment. I once had to stand in front of a roomful of high school students and say my name. I couldn’t get it out. Two of those classmates of mine thought that was just so damn funny; they had a riotous time making fun of me.
Therefore, I was bullied for the rest of my time in high school. It wasn’t fun, man.
I have gotten through my own stuttering issue. I hesitate to call it a “problem,” because it didn’t inhibit me from enjoying a modestly successful career over the years. I, do, though admire those who are able to get past far more debilitating ailments than the one I endured.
Joe Biden happens to be a prominent American politician who is now seeking the presidency.
If nothing else happens to his candidacy — be it a self-inflicted wound or something that someone else reveals about him — I am inclined to cut this guy with whom I share a common experience a little more slack than I otherwise might be inclined to do.