Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama condemn platform targeting Joe Biden’s wife

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WASHINGTON | Should President-elect Joe Biden’s wife stop calling herself “Dr Jill Biden”? Certainly not, say the former First Ladies Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama, denouncing a recent controversial press forum.

In his text, criticized as “sexist” by other Democratic figures and published on Saturday by the Wall Street Journal, essayist Joseph Epstein believes that, unless you are a doctor, there is no reason to precede his title name of “Dr”.

Ms. Biden holds a doctorate in educational science.

“In the social sciences, to be called doctor is considered petty”, insists Mr. Epstein, assuring that the title of doctor of Jill Biden “rings false” and “a little funny”.

His opinion immediately sparked an outcry.

“Her name is Dr Jill Biden, get it right!” “, Thus assailed on Twitter Mrs. Clinton, former Secretary of State and presidential candidate.

Michelle Obama saw Mr. Epstein’s text as an illustration of the unfavorable treatment suffered by professionally successful women.

“Too often, our successes arouse skepticism, even derision,” wrote on Instagram Mrs. Obama, a highly listened to former First Lady in the United States.

The forum generated such scandalized reactions that the head of the “Opinion” pages of the Wall Street Journal, Paul Gigot, had to defend his editorial choice, saying that Mr. Epstein’s question deserved to be asked and that the daily newspaper him. – even reserved the term “Dr” for doctors.

Mr. Gigot denounced a “political campaign” led by “the Biden team”.

Then fifty years old, Jill Biden had obtained her doctorate at the University of Delaware in 2007, a time when according to Mr. Epstein the prestige of the doctorates was “lessened by the erosion of the seriousness and the relaxation of the criteria in the university teaching”.

“Together, we will build a world where the successes of our daughters will be hailed rather than denigrated,” the future First Lady tweeted on Sunday.

“Dr. Biden earned her degrees through hard work and sheer determination. (…) This article would never have been written about a man ”, for his part criticized the future“ Second Gentleman ”, Doug Emhoff, husband of Kamala Harris.

Many Internet users also regretted the fact that Mr. Epstein addressed Jill Biden by a phrase considered paternalistic: “Mrs. First Lady, Mrs. Biden, Jill, my little one”.

The university where Mr. Epstein taught, Northwestern, for its part considered the forum “misogynistic”. “The designation as a doctor of anyone who has obtained a doctorate (…) is well deserved,” she noted.

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