Over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal published an op-ed by author Joseph Epstein, in which he suggested that Dr. Jill Biden drop the “Dr.” title. His (misogynistic) reasoning was because Biden has a doctorate in education and not an M.D.
He also went on to say that her title sounds “fraudulent, not to say a touch comic” and proceeded to call her “kiddo.” Not to mention, Epstein also goes on to mention that he has an honorary doctorate.
Once social media caught wind of Epstein’s inarguably terrible take, people did not hold back; including Merriam-Webster’s Twitter account.
Without sharing any further context or alluding to the article, the account posted a friendly reminder to all. “The word ‘doctor’ comes from the Latin word for “teacher,” they tweet.
It was a simple, classy rebuttal to an unnecessary discourse. But Merriam-Webster weren’t the only people to come to her defense.
Daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Bernice King tweeted “Dear @DrBiden: My father was a non-medical doctor. And his work benefited humanity greatly. Yours does, too.”
Hillary Clinton also came to Dr. Biden’s defense and simply tweeted, “Her name is Dr. Jill Biden. Get used to it.”
Paul A. Gigot, the top editor for The Journal’s opinion section backed the article and suggested that people are conflating a “relatively small issue” from just one op-ed.
He wrote in a response to the article, “My guess is that the Biden team concluded it was a chance to use the big gun of identity politics to send a message to critics as it prepares to take power. There’s nothing like playing the race or gender card to stifle criticism.”
“Mrs. Biden is now America’s most prominent doctorate holder and is taking a leading role in education policy. She can’t be off-limits for commentary,” he continued to write.
Finally, he finished by saying, “If you disagree with Mr. Epstein, fair enough. Write a letter or shout your objections on Twitter. But these pages aren’t going to stop publishing provocative essays merely because they offend the new administration or the political censors in the media and academe.”
Lead image: Ben Stanfield/Flickr.