Look out how you use proud words.
When you let proud words go, it is not easy to call them back.
They wear long boots, hard boots; they walk off proud; they can’t hear you calling.
That terse but sage advice comes from Carl Sandburg. They embody a hard lesson that some people fail to learn during their lifetimes. Whether presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden is one of those people is about to be tested.
In 2018, at the height of the left-engineered scandal centering on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, the former vice president appeared on NBC’s “Today” show, where he opined of accuser Christine Blasey Ford:
She should not have to go through what Anita Hill went through. And some of the questions she was asked and the way the right went after her on national television and question her integrity and question her, not just her honesty, questioned her behavior. I mean, that’s just not appropriate. You shouldn’t have to be twice put through the same exact thing.
But now that Biden has himself been accused of sexual assault, he appears more concerned with saving his own political hide than he is about whether Tara Reade is put “through the same exact thing” as Anita Hill.
Unluckily for him, the tide on Reade’s story has begun to turn. A Politico piece published this morning acknowledges in its headline, “Tara Reade allegations stir Democratic unrest.” BuzzFeed takes the Reade accusations a step further, writing “Democrats Will Have To Answer Questions About Tara Reade.”
And then there’s Peter Beinart at The Atlantic, who is counseling Biden to “Release His Papers.” The papers in question are photographs, documents, videotapes, and files, as well as 415 gigabytes of electronic records, that Biden delivered in 2012 to his alma mater, the University of Delaware. All told there are some 1,875 boxes of materials, chronicling Biden’s 36-year Senate career.
At the time, the university said it expected to make the papers “available to the public two years after Biden’s last day in elected public office.” Biden left the vice presidency in January 2017, and January 2019 came and went with no papers released. Then, on April 24, 2019, the day before Biden announced his presidential campaign, the university revised the schedule. The papers would now remain sealed until December 31, 2019, or until two years after Biden “retires from public life,” whichever came later. That means Americans likely won’t learn what’s in his papers before they vote for president this fall.
But Reade’s accusations make access to the papers even more crucial. Biden himself has said that sexual-harassment claims should be carefully investigated. When Christine Blasey Ford alleged, after Brett Kavanaugh was nominated tot [sic] the Supreme Court, that he had tried to rape her in high school, Biden said the Senate Judiciary Committee “should undertake a thorough and nonpartisan effort to get to the truth, wherever it leads.”
The Senate records could exonerate Biden. They could also condemn him if Reade’s story turns out to be truthful and accurate.
The ball is now in his court.