About a week ago, a very angry man named Joseph Epstein wrote an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal about the subject closest to his heart: Jill Biden shouldn’t call herself a doctor.
It was titled: “Is There a Doctor in the White House? Not if You Need an M.D.”
Epstein’s gripe is that Dr. Jill Biden has an Ed.D., or a doctor of education, which she earned at the University of Delaware. Therefore, she is not legally allowed to operate on anyone in any state, which is the man’s standard for using “Dr.” before your name.
It’s a very strange gripe to have, especially since so, so, so many people do it and it’s perfectly normal and this is the perspective of a five-year-old who doesn’t know what high education is and thinks all doctors do is give shots.
There was a lot of backlash to Epstein’s piece, because not only was it wrong, it was pretty sexist. It starts with this condescending opener:
Madame First Lady—Mrs. Biden—Jill—kiddo: a bit of advice on what may seem like a small but I think is a not unimportant matter. Any chance you might drop the “Dr.” before your name?
Though many responded immediately—like Merriam-Webster and future First Gentleman Doug Emhoff—the Bidens didn’t do so until they were being interviewed by Stephen Colbert on Friday.
“You once said in your memoir the role I have always felt most at home in is Dr. Biden,” said Colbert.” Some people have recently taken it upon themselves to question that title. Do you have any reaction?”
“Yeah that was such a surprise,” she replied. “And it was really the tone of it that I think – you know he called me kiddo.”
She continued, “One of the things I’m most proud of is my doctorate. I mean I worked so hard for it.”
President-elect Joe Biden added, “I got to hand her her doctorate on the stage of the University of Delaware, she had two masters degrees, she kept going to school all the time while teaching at night, and then what happened was I said Jill why don’t you get a doctorate and make us some real money. She gets the doctorate and gets a $2,000 raise.”
Hmm, I think now I see the source of Epstein’s insecurity. He’s not making that bread.