Biden Faces Blowback as Resurfaced Content From the 1970s Shows His Use of Racially Insensitive Language

Brian Snyder/File Photo/Reuters

Former Vice President Joe Biden is facing blowback after comments resurfaced showing he used racially insensitive language when talking about black Americans in the 1970s.

According to a book recently released by The Intercept reporter and Young Turks contributor Ryan Grim, Biden gave a speech in which he outlined what he thought was “good for the Negro.”

In a speech before the City Club in 1973, Biden explained why he felt the two-party system benefited black voters and southern states as Republicans gained traction in areas that had voted for Democrats since the Civil War:

“I think the two-party system, although my Democratic colleagues won’t like my saying this, is good for the South and good for the Negro, good for the black in the South. Other than the fact that [southern Senators] still call me boy, I think they’ve changed their mind a little bit.”

It caught the eyes of many, who took to Twitter to condemn the former vice president.

While that quote shocked many, the preceding paragraph included in the screenshot published by Grim caught the eyes of many others.

Grim referenced an interview from 1975 with a Deleware newspaper in which Biden used flippant language describing slavery:

“I do not buy the concept, popular in the ’60s, which said ‘We have suppressed the black man for 300 years and the white man is now far ahead in the race for everything our society offers. In order to even the score, we must now give the black man a head start, or even hold the white man back, to even the race.’ I don’t buy that. I don’t feel responsible for the sins of my father and grandfather. I feel responsible for what the situation is today, for the sins of my own generation. And I’ll be damned if I feel responsible to pay for what happened 300 years ago.”

Many took to Twitter to call into question Biden’s views.

Although Biden’s views could certainly have changed in the decades since his interview, his comments about not feeling “responsible for the sins of [his] father and grandfather” differ from many in the Democratic presidential primary who have called for reparations to be paid to black Americans to compensate for the history of slavery and inequality in America.

Biden is currently the front-runner in the pool of 23 candidates vying to become the Democratic Party’s nominee in 2020. As IJR previously reported, this is not the first time that Biden’s past actions on racial issues have been called into question.

What do you think?

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Mary Jo
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Who cares if he used racially insensitive words 40 years ago? What everyone should be looking at is his latest escapade with his son & China during the last administration. Good ole “Uncle Joe” isn’t so good. That’s more relevant.

Morte206
Member

Why is any man living today financially obligated to pay for the sins of others more than two generations ago? If that’s the case why aren’t AAs demanding reparations from the governments of various African countries, after all the long journey to slavery in America took its first steps in the African bush not the auction block in an American port. Why isn’t the UN advocating for reperations for Jews from Egypt after all it is long established in historical writings that Jews were used as slaves to build the pyramids. Using contemporary idiotic logic this should result in Egypt… Read more »

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