When Politicians Talk Empathy, Be Suspicious

Dear Reader (Including everybody who left their laptop at the repair shop and then forgot to get it back),

Last night Joe Biden told a story that caused the needle of my B.S. detector to plant itself in the red zone. That’s impressive, because I had to have it recalibrated for the Trump era (It’s not 3 roentgen, it’s 15,000!).

When asked a question about discrimination against transgender people, specifically in the military, he recounted how, when he was a teenager, his dad was dropping him off to apply for a lifeguard job. When they saw two men hugging and kissing, Biden said, “I turn to my dad and my dad says, ‘Joey, it’s simple. They love each other.’” 

It’s a nice, well-intentioned story that he’s told before. But I simply don’t believe it. It’s possible he believes it. Memory is a weird thing. But I just find the idea that this exchange occurred in early 1960s Delaware to be highly implausible. 

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