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31 Aug, 2021 02:29

Biden calls black senior adviser Cedric Richmond a ‘boy’ during FEMA briefing

Biden calls black senior adviser Cedric Richmond a ‘boy’ during FEMA briefing

President Joe Biden has faced criticism for yet another ‘racial’ stumble, after calling a black man who serves as a White House senior adviser a “boy” during a FEMA briefing on hurricane damage in Louisiana.

“I’m here with, uh, my senior adviser and, uh, boy who knows Louisiana very, very well, man, and New Orleans, Cedric Richmond,” Biden said on Monday as he prepared to begin the FEMA press briefing. Calling a black man a “boy” is considered a racist pejorative, rooted in insulting references to slaves.

The comment quickly sparked criticism on social media. The critics included Republican Party spokesman Paris Dennard, who was a White House staffer in the Trump and George W. Bush administrations, and pointed out that Richmond is 47 years old.

“While Ja’Ron Smith was 38 years old when he was in a similar role for President [Donald] Trump, I can assure he was not called a boy by President Trump,” said Dennard, who is black. “Joe Biden just continues to insult black men openly and in public because he doesn’t care.”

Biden made a series of racial gaffes while campaigning for president last year, including telling a black radio host, “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black.” He also mocked a black journalist for asking whether he would take a test of his cognitive abilities, saying, “Come on, man. That's like saying to you, before you got on this program if you had taken a test were you taking cocaine or not. What do you think, huh? Are you a junkie?”

Biden also has previously drawn criticism for his use of the word “boy.” Speaking at a 2019 fundraiser, he described how he had worked with segregationists in the US Senate in the 1970s and 1980s and noted that “at least there was some civility,” as a notoriously racist Mississippi Democrat “never called me ‘boy,’ he always called me ‘son.’”

When then-senator Barack Obama was running for president in 2007, Biden told a reporter, “I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s storybook, man.”

Also on rt.com ‘Poor kids just as smart as white kids’: Biden makes another high-profile patronizing gaffe

Biden’s own candidacy in that election cycle had already been dinged by a 2006 remark in which he said of a large influx of immigrants from India in his home state, “You cannot go to a 7-Eleven or a Dunkin Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent.” And as vice president in 2012, he told a largely black audience that Republican presidential challenger Mitt Romney would “put y’all back in chains.”

Conservative commentator Anthony Brian Logan pointed out that mainstream media outlets attacked Trump incessantly for referring to a black supporter as “my African-American.”

In contrast, he said, “Joe Biden can refer to Cedric Richmond as ‘boy’ just a few months after he yelled and cursed at him on Zoom, and people jump through hoops to make excuses for him. One day he’s gonna drop the N word with a hard N, and they'll make excuses for that, too.”

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