December 18, 2020

I'd forgotten what a real president who's also a decent human being sounds like. Stephen Colbert welcomed Joe and Dr. Jill Biden to his show last night. It was, dare I say, inspiring. Via Deadline:

As they had in a previous interview, Colbert and Biden talked about their own experiences with grief, but this time it was about the more than 300,000 who have died from Covid-19.

“Our country has an unaddressed grief,” Colbert said. “Over 300,000 people who have died, partly because our presidential leadership doesn’t want to acknowledge the dimension of this tragedy. …What do you think the role of the president is in leading the country to face loss?”

“It’s profound,” Biden said. “Think of all the people this Christmas who are going to sit at a table, an empty chair across the table, a son or a daughter or mom or dad. As you know, people want to know people who have been through it. ‘Can I make it? Can I make it?’ What you and I talked about is that I think empathy is a critically important thing. It doesn’t make it easier to talk about it if you have been through it. But when you have been through it, you talk to people, they go, ‘Okay I know he or she understands. They have been through it.”

Colbert responded, “But how do we address that right now, because there is this unaddressed grief, and it seems to me it is not healthy for the nation to pretend like something…I am worried that we are not addressing it.”

Biden said, “The role of the presidency is to say, grieve. There is a reason to grieve. You’ve had great loss, but there will come a time, remind yourself, but the time will come, when you think of your husband, wife, son daughter, mom or dad, you will get a smile to your lips before you get a tear to your eye. That’s when you know you are going to make it.”

Watching this show made me feel better. (Go watch it all, you'll feel better, too.) God knows, we have some horrors ahead of us, but having an adult human being in charge makes it all seem bearable.

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