Washington: Joe Biden, the US Vice President, is known for his humanity. When he was 29 year old and newly elected to the Senate, he got a call in December 1972, that tumbled his life upside-down. Biden has faced his tragedy just as publicly as he has painfully. His first wife Neilia and daughter were killed in an accident that also left his sons injured, one of them with a possible permanent brain damage. A Senator, whose career almost ended before it even began, Joseph Biden almost resigned before he took the oath of office beside his son on the hospital bed.
He was known as the Vice President who almost always says the wrong things at the most inappropriate of times. As the person who does not really comprehend the difference between personal and professional. But in the event of tragedy yet again striking the Biden family, as his 46 year old son Beau Biden died of brain cancer, we go back 40 years in time and remember him for the one thing he is human.
In 2012, in a speech addressing the families of fallen troops, he said, “You are important. The ache in the back never goes away. And just when you think, ‘Maybe I’m going to make it,’ you’re riding down the road and you pass a field, and you see a flower and it reminds you. Or you hear a tune on the radio. Or you just look up in the night. You know, you think, ‘Maybe I’m not going to make it, man.’ Because you feel at that moment the way you felt the day you got the news.”
Over the years of his political existence, he was never seen wash off the rugged distinctiveness of his personality, even though it got him in trouble more often than not. Biden made this individuality, his biggest asset. It is his humanness that made the death of his son affect so many. Not the kind to shy away from showing his flaws to the people, Joe Biden made it easy for us to relate to him. Over the years, he allowed us to see the dark parts of him.
In a commencement speech he gave in Yale University a few weeks back, he said, “The most successful and happiest people I’ve known understand that a good life at its core is about being personal. It’s about being engaged. It’s about being there for a friend or a colleague when they're injured or in an accident, remembering the birthdays, congratulating them on their marriage, celebrating the birth of their child. It’s about being available to them when they're going through personal loss. It’s about loving someone more than yourself, as one of your speakers have already mentioned. It all seems to get down to being personal.”
For all the wrong he has done and all the negative media that has surrounded him, what is worth remembering is the remarkable humanity US Vice President holds.