Joe Biden was right: it is a big fucking deal. By now, you’ve no doubt watched about 100 versions of Biden’s statement of the obvious, made Tuesday while embracing President Obama at the signing ceremony for the health care reform bill. “This is a big fucking deal!” Biden ‘whispered’ into Obama’s ear as the two men hugged.
Based on the look on the President’s face when Biden dropped the ‘fuck bomb’, it seems as if Obama realized immediately that his big-mouth Vice President’s words had been picked up by the microphone. The expression on Obama’s face read something like, “Oh, he is such an asshole.”
There are many angles to this story. First and foremost, as I said when I led off the post, it is a big fucking deal. The Obama Administration managed to do what has eluded leaders in this nation for over 100 years: provide universal health care. Books will be written, classes will be taught and even mini-series will be filmed detailing exactly how in the hell the President managed to do this. It’s that big a deal. Love the bill or hate it, there is no question it is a big fucking deal.
I’m more interested, though, in the angle on Biden. The man [who I’ve done a 180 on, by the way; I used to dislike him with a passion unbridled] is a big mouth, who loves to hear his own voice.
So, a little ‘fuck bomb’ is nothing. In Biden’s defense, it is important to remember that one of his best friends on Earth was the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy [D, Mass.]. No one in American politics worked longer on the cause of universal health care [granted, for the first 30 years he did so between drinks and waitresses] than Kennedy. No doubt, Biden was thinking a lot about his late friend in the moments leading up to Biden’s introduction of Obama on Tuesday. I wouldn’t doubt that Biden was caught up in an emotional moment and merely expressed what he was feeling.
I also like the way the White House is dealing with it: which is essentially to say, “Hey, it’s Joe Biden: what the fuck do you expect?” That is definitely the way to play this rather than trotting out poor Joe and making him apologize for it. First of all, he’s just as likely to say something stupid during the apology anyway, thus making a bad situation more hysterical.
More importantly, though, exactly what would he be apologizing for? Biden did not lean into an open microphone and calculatingly say they word ‘fuck’ so that every nun and altar boy from here to Scranton could hear him. You had to really, really listen good to get the gist of what Biden said to Obama. Yes, the Vice President should know about ‘hot’ microphones and that nowadays they can pick up your goddamned thoughts let alone something you whisper.
But Biden is an emotional man. Obama knew then when he tapped him to be his running mate. It’s a passion that often – perhaps more often than not – gets Biden into trouble. Like just about any politician, he has an enormous ego, thinks he’s brilliant, and believes that he would be doing you a disservice if he did not point out to you just how brilliant he is. He is also compassionate, well-read, accomplished, smart, funny, and – from most accounts – a generally likeable fella.
And, like most of us, he uses the word ‘fuck’ a lot. Unless you’ve never used the word, never thought the word, and possibly never committed the act associated with the word, you’ve no right to castigate Biden. Dumb to utter the ‘fuck bomb’ before a world wide audience? Yep. A national moral crisis that will leave an entire generation of young children scarred for life? I think not.
reprinted with permission from The Husband’s blog and now copyrighted 2010, Melissa (Betty and Boo’s Mommy, The Betty and Boo Chronicles) If you are reading this on a blog or website other than The Betty and Boo Chronicles or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.