There When We Need a Voice

I trekked out to Bethesda last night for some dinner at Vapiano’s, an inexpensive but delicious Italian restaurant, and was quickly informed, upon glancing the ominous line of black limos and SUVs, that Vice President Joe Biden was inside.

I have to admit, I love me some Biden.

His sometimes abrasive, often loud-mouthed ways may get him in trouble from time to time, but one thing’s for sure: there are contexts in which this serves a priceless benefit.

Vice President Biden last night at Vapiano's in Bethesda.

Vice President Biden has long been an advocate for women’s issues. In fact, just the night before, he and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, held a reception at the Naval Observatory to commemorate the 17th anniversary of the passage of the Violence Against Women Act. This bill was passed thanks, in large part, to the efforts of Mr. Biden.

And he is still tirelessly advocating. Earlier this year, he spoke at the University of New Hampshire, praising it for its harsh stance on sexual assault and calling on other universities and colleges around the country to follow suit.

He says what so many are afraid to: “rape is rape is rape.”

And later: “if a friend even hints at potential abuse, you have an obligation to speak up.”

Most recently, the White House launched its “1 is 2 Many” campaign which seeks to raise awareness about these issues and create a conversation among those who are most vulnerable to its effects.

It is so rare to have such a high-profile political figure speak out on a topic where most run the other way. It’s high time we listen and follow his example. Sometimes the most uncomfortable is also the most necessary.

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