Jill Biden Has The Perfect Response To Criticism Of Her Ph.D.
It’s been nearly a week since the Wall Street Journal ran an op-ed calling out first lady-to-be Dr. Jill Biden for using the “Dr.” honorific. For the first time since the academic tempest in a teacup broke out, Dr. Biden has addressed the condescending piece in person, and admitted to late night show host Stephen Colbert that the article blindsided her. “That was such a surprise… and really the tone of it that I think, you know, he called me ‘kiddo.’ One of the things I’m most proud of is my doctorate,” she said (via YouTube).
Jill Biden famously made history when she was Second Lady under the Obama administration by hanging on to her day job as a teacher at the Northern Virginia Community College. She also plans to continue making history because she has no intention to stop teaching, even after she ceases to be known as “Dr. B” to her students to become First Lady of the United States of America (via Politico).
The interview gave President-elect Joe Biden the opportunity to talk about how and why the First-Lady-to-be decided to get a doctorate in education. “She had two masters degrees… I said Jill, why don’t you get a doctorate and make us some money. She gets the doctorate and gets a $2,000 raise,” Biden joked.
'I am grateful' for the support: Jill Biden
Despite the bewilderment the attack has triggered, Jill Biden says the hostility gave her the opportunity to see the depth of support there was for her. “But look at all those people that came out in support of me. I am so grateful. I was just overwhelmed by how gracious people were toward me,” she said.
One of those that stood by her good friend was former First Lady Michelle Obama, who reached out to the former Second Lady via Instagram. Obama wrote: “For eight years, I saw Dr. Jill Biden do what a lot of professional women do—successfully manage more than one responsibility at a time, from her teaching duties to her official obligations in the White House to her roles as a mother, wife, and friend. And right now, we’re all seeing what also happens to so many professional women, whether their titles are Dr., Ms., Mrs., or even First Lady: All too often, our accomplishments are met with skepticism, even derision. We’re doubted by those who choose the weakness of ridicule over the strength of respect. And yet somehow, their words can stick—after decades of work, we’re forced to prove ourselves all over again. Is this really the example we want to set for the next generation?”
Doug Emhoff and Chasten Buttegieg weigh in on Jill Biden's side
The man who would be Jill Biden’s successor as spouse to the Vice President, Doug Emhoff, also weighed in on the debate, saying, via Twitter that “Dr. Biden earned her degrees through hard work and pure grit. She is an inspiration to me, to her students, and to Americans across this country. This story would never have been written about a man.”
Another voice of support came from Chasten Buttigieg, husband of former Biden rival Pete, who him self is a former teacher, and who tweeted: “”The author could’ve used fewer words to just say ‘ya know in my day we didn’t have to respect women.'”
The attacks against Jill Biden and her academic qualifications have continued in conservative media, with some columnists questioning the readability of the first-lady-to-be’s doctoral thesis. But for every critic, there are voices of support. The most recent endorsement of Dr. Biden’s academic qualification came from her alma mater, the University of Delaware, which tweeted: “Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership: @DrBiden, Class of 2006. #BlueHensForever”
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