Wednesday, April 03, 2019

The evolution of Woke Joe

It was only a matter of time before Joe Biden responded to multiple allegations of his inappropriately touching women over the years. On Wednesday afternoon he took to Twitter.

Look, I don't know Biden personally. I'm not about to try to guess what his true motivations were when he got "up close and personal" with women of all ages.

It does seem rather odd though that Biden would say something like "social norms are changing" as if the process has just begun. As Emily Yoffe points out in a Politico piece, Biden himself was at the forefront of "changing norms."

In a 2015 speech at Syracuse University about sexual harassment and assault, Biden made his oft-repeated assertion that, “We need a fundamental change in our culture. And the quickest place to change culture is to change it on the campuses of America.” In other words, campuses were laboratories where government officials could impose their vision of how males and females should interact.

Among the cultural shifts orchestrated by the Obama administration was the assertion that evaluation of campus claims of sexual harassment and assault rest on the subjective feelings of the accuser. That meant it was irrelevant whether the accused had an intention to abuse, harm or offend. This was codified in 2013, with the joint release by the departments of Education and Justice of what they called “a blueprint for colleges and universities throughout the country to protect students from sexual harassment and assault.” An analysis by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, a civil liberties group, found that the administration had abandoned the principle that claims of harassment should be evaluated based on an “objective” or “reasonable person” standard.

The Obama administration’s efforts to expand the definitions of what constituted a possible sexual violation were thoroughgoing. In 2014, the White House issued a report called “Not Alone,” which provided schools with a model “climate survey” that gave this definition of punishable behavior: “Sexual violence refers to a range of behaviors that are unwanted by the recipient and include remarks about physical appearance; persistent sexual advances that are undesired by the recipient; unwanted touching; and unwanted oral, anal, or vaginal penetration or attempted penetration.” In other words, the Obama administration expanded the definition of sexual violence to include compliments, or the kind of touching—often unasked for, and sometimes unwelcome—that Biden has engaged in for years.

I guess the conservatives who were calling out Biden's behavior as Veep were actually the "woke" ones. Ironic, eh?


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