James Eastland was a politician from Mississippi from 1941 to 1978. Known as the "Voice of the White South" and "Godfather of Mississippi Politics," he was adamantly opposed to the civil rights movement. Opposing both the Brown v. Board of Education decision and the Voting Rights Act, Eastland's entire political career was focused on entrenching white supremacy.
Joe Biden, when commenting on the current political landscape, said "I was in a caucus with James O. Eastland. He never called me 'boy,' he always called me 'son,'" Biden told donors. "Well guess what? At least there was some civility. We got things done," Biden said. "We didn't agree on much of anything. We got things done. We got it finished."
According to Biden, working with racist politicians opposing basic human rights is fine as long as it's done "civilly." Naturally, this statement drew considerable backlash from other Democratic 2020 candidates, especially Cory Booker. "Vice President Biden's relationships with proud segregationists are not the model for how we make America a safer and more inclusive place for black people, and for everyone," Booker said, calling on Biden to apologize. Biden, however, responded with a fierce reluctance to apologize, saying "Cory should apologize. He knows better."
My question is, what exactly does Biden expect Booker to apologize for? Pointing out the absurdity of his comments? Refusing to cozy up to segregationist? Biden's absolute lack of self-awareness is appalling, and his willingness to whitewash America's dark history is terrifying. If working alongside segregationist is Biden's proudest moment of cooperation, what can we expect out of him in a time where civil rights are under attack, children are being put into concentration camps, and the poorest Americans are at the greatest risk to be sucked into poverty.
This leads us to the most important reason to investigate Biden's comments: what does the Democratic Party want out of their next leader? Someone who is willing to work beside segregationist? Someone who is telling a black man to apologize to him for defending that segregationist? Someone who has made it incredibly clear that he sees no problem with the current condition of the nation? The Democratic Party is about change, progress, and the improvement of peoples' lives. Biden doesn't stand for any of this. He simply wants to ignore our nation's rampant racial and economic inequalities. Biden put it perfectly, saying "No one's standard of living will change, nothing would fundamentally change." Obama's campaign may have been "Change We Can Believe In," but Biden has made it clear his campaign will be "No Change Because I'm Doing Fine."
No one should vote for him.