Poor Joe Biden. He was on the hot seat again this week for his comments about telling his family to protect themselves from the swine flu virus by avoiding planes, subways and small, enclosed places. That seems like eminently sensible advice to me, especially if, as for most Americans, you just can’t take the chance of getting sick because you don’t have any sick days off from work.
The only problem is that it ran contrary to the pre-approved White House swine flu message of “Don’t worry, be happy.”
The outcry about the vice president on the cable shows has been over the top — “OMG! Can you BELIEVE that Joe Biden is at it again?! The White House had to ‘clarify’ his statements! Maybe it’s time to put a muzzle on Joe!”
To his critics, I say leave Joe alone.
I completely disagree with the common wisdom that Biden says the darndest things and I want the White House and the media to leave Joe alone. Not because I don’t enjoy a good chuckle now and then, but because Biden actually comes up with comments that are closer to the common sense things that many of us are thinking. This is exactly why I ‘heart’ Joe Biden.
I understand that the government wants to maintain a certain amount of calm and not create a panic. But sometimes, as in this instance, Biden is more the clear-headed voice of reason than the rest of the White House crowd.
Sure, maybe he needs to keep the comedy to himself on certain occasions, but I give the man credit — Biden calls ‘em like he sees ‘em and moves on.
Telling the truth or speaking forthrightly about how one perceives a situation isn’t a “gaffe” — it’s the kind of thing I’d love to see more of in Washington. As for the swine flu situation, given how we all know how easy it is to catch a little cold on even a short flight or subway ride, I have to wonder whether the White House swine flu message to go about our business and not worry too much is really about protecting our health or about protecting the already failing economy?
Yeah, I am that cynical.
You can believe what you want, but I’m sticking with Joe on this one. And since President Obama is the one who chose him to be the VP, I’d suggest that he find a way to embrace his own inner Joe Biden. It will make the rest of his presidential tenure a lot more enjoyable.