Women Divided in Their Accusations and Defense over Joe Biden's Controversial Gestures
Since the allegations came out against Former Vice President Joe Biden that he touched a number of women inappropriately, people have been divided in their opinions.
Some women have condemned his actions while others defended him, however, a certain group has also tried to understand Biden’s intentions with his gestures.
Former Vice President Joe Biden, 76, has been accused of touching several women uninvited. A number of women have since come out in his defense vouching for his character.
Social norms are changing. I understand that, and I’ve heard what these women are saying. Politics to me has always been about making connections, but I will be more mindful about respecting personal space in the future. That’s my responsibility and I will meet it. pic.twitter.com/Ya2mf5ODts— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) April 3, 2019
They insisted that he meant nothing by the gestures as it was just his old-fashioned style. This defense has mainly come from older women, but younger ones have also uttered this stance.
In a video released on Wednesday on Twitter, Biden explained that he’d never felt he was acting inappropriately. One of the women who condemned him was Debbie Walsh, the director of the Center for American Women and Politics.
"There's a bit of 'not getting it' when it comes to the gender story here. To me, there's been a patronizing quality to this, an alpha male asserting himself physically, that I think is problematic for him."
The first woman to accuse the politician of inappropriate behavior was Lucy Flores, the former Nevada state Assemblywoman. Last week, she claimed that Biden had kissed her on the back of her head at a 2014 Nevada campaign rally.
No everyone...norms have not changed. What has changed is more and more people are being vocal about what they believe is and is not acceptable to them and there are vehicles for them to be heard. That’s all.— Symone D. Sanders (@SymoneDSanders) April 3, 2019
Flores said the encounter left her feeling "uneasy, gross, and confused." Since then, three other women have come forward with their own stories of alleged sexual harassment.
Writer, D.J. Hill claimed that in 2012, the politician placed his hand on her shoulder, then dropped it down her back in a way that made her "very uncomfortable." Her husband noticed the movement and joked about it.
The second woman, former college student, Caitlyn Caruso said Biden "rested his hand on her thigh — even as she squirmed in her seat to show her discomfort — and hugged her 'just a little bit too long' at an event on sexual assault at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas."
IS BIDEN BEHAVIOR “OLD SCHOOL POLITICS”? Former VP Joe Biden posted a two-minute video in response to criticism he’s faced after allegations of inappropriate touching. The co-hosts weigh in on if his response is enough. https://t.co/f8u2wc159S pic.twitter.com/GloqCjPghj— The View (@TheView) April 4, 2019
Caruso, who’s now 22, revealed that she was 19 at the time and had just recounted her own story of sexual assault. A day before the two women came out, Amy Lappos, a former aide to Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., revealed that Biden had touched her face with both hands and rubbed noses in 2009.
These allegations have made things quite tense for the politician who is in the process of deciding whether to run for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination or not.
In the video where he defended himself, Biden said: "Politics to me has always been about making connections, but I will be more mindful about respecting personal space in the future," adding "I get it."
As one of the women who came out in the first place I find it absurd that people are using the “Me too”movement to manipulate. I found Mr Biden’s response genuine we must make room for the men who right their wrongs. And learn from it This was not assault.— ✌🏼rosanna arquette (@RoArquette) April 4, 2019
It was his second statement since he was accused. Former Sen. Jean Carnahan of Missouri was one of the women who came out to defend Biden.
In a series of tweets, she called his gestures a "human touch" and praised the way he'd consoled her after she lost her husband and son. Another politician, Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine described Biden as "just a warm, affectionate person."
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, advised the former vice president to change his behavior and "pretend you have a cold." However, she felt these allegations weren’t enough to disqualify him for a presidential run.
Feminist Gloria Steinem wrote in an email to “The Associated Press” saying:
"I think women are more than smart enough to know that a) Joe Biden is who he is and hugs everybody, b) this was minor compared to most sexual harassment. We all need to get to a place where bodies are private property and not to be touched without permission."
A Democratic voter and a screenwriter in New York named Laura Kelber, 61, added to the debate by saying: "It's not OK to demean and invade women's space. It's totally offensive and inappropriate." She revealed that she was proud that younger women were speaking up against Biden's physical behavior.
And then...Trump recommends to Federal Reserve seat Herman Cain, who has faced multiple allegations of sexual harassment, further proof that when allegations are leveled against Trump/ his friends/allies, Trump apparently sees no need for accountability. https://t.co/kCb0QHrqhI— megan twohey (@mega2e) April 5, 2019
“The View’s” Meghan McCain, 34, called the politician "one of the truly decent and compassionate men in all of politics." Late Republican Sen. John McCain’s daughter shared an emotional moment during her father's illness.
At the time, Biden was praised for switching seats with another host so he could hold a weeping McCain's hands in an effort to console her. Rachel Corson, 19, a college student, shared her own thoughts on the matter.
Joe Biden is one of the truly decent and compassionate men in all of American politics. He has helped me through my fathers diagnosis, treatment and ultimate passing more than anyone of my fathers friends combined. I wish there was more empathy from our politicians not less.— Meghan McCain (@MeghanMcCain) April 2, 2019
"I feel saddened that people are jumping on this issue just to find dirt. Someone who is very highly respected in government who might have made a mistake and wasn't clear with his communication ... I find it disheartening that we are looking for something he did wrong."
A retired assistant principal in New Hampshire, Susan Chandler, 72, thought it was ironic that Biden was receiving so much backlash for his alleged actions while President Donald Trump got away scot-free. She stated, "We have a president who grabs crotches, and now we are damning this man?"
As the caption of his video Biden, who was described as someone who "hugs everybody," wrote:
“Social norms are changing. I understand that, and I’ve heard what these women are saying. Politics to me has always been about making connections, but I will be more mindful about respecting personal space in the future. That’s my responsibility and I will meet it."
Flores has since responded to it saying he still hasn’t apologized for his alleged behavior.