The President’s embarrassing request for a White House visitor to “hush up, boy” on Monday night at a celebration of the Islamic festival of Eid al-Fitr ruined an otherwise joyous occasion.
At the festive end-of-Ramadan celebration, Vice President Biden joked to the crowd that the speech he was about to deliver would be the “quickest speech I’ve ever given.” This occurred at precisely 6 o’clock, just before evening prayers were to begin.
When an unidentified member of the crowd kept interrupting him, however, the president’s mood shifted.
The attendee was invited to speak by the 80-year-old Biden, who said, “You want to come and give a speech?”
My mum was often telling me to “hush up, boy.”
Someone in the crowd said to Biden, “We also have the first federal judge who is a Muslim.” This sparked a disturbance. The president, who earlier in his address had failed to acknowledge the judge, then referred to him as “the only one.”
The question: “How are you, Judge?” Biden provided an appropriate response.
“Man, I can’t figure out why you applied for this position. Thanks for performing your duties, but I’m responsible for appointing all of those federal judges. I’m not joking around.
Someone in the audience had pointed out the judge, and as they continued talking, Biden warned them to be quiet.
Shortly after reprimanding the visitor, Biden lauded Ramadan as “a time to slow down, reconnect, and remember what matters most.”
Despite the audience’s amusement at the president’s witty response, this incident occurred only a few months after Biden made headlines by calling Wes Moore, Maryland’s first black governor, a “boy” during a speech.
Biden boasted, “You got a hell of a new governor in Wes Moore,” before discussing Moore’s collegiate football career. The kid looked like he still had some game in him, and he’s the genuine deal.He had weapons with him.
The president frequently uses the term “boy” when referring to younger members of Congress. On the campaign trail, though, he faced backlash for using the phrase to characterize how well he could get along with senators who supported segregation.
“I was in a caucus with white supremacist senator from Mississippi James O. Eastland,” Biden stated at a dinner in Manhattan in 2019. “He always called me son, never boy.”
In a statement, Biden’s Democratic presidential primary opponent, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, reminded him, “You don’t joke about calling black men ‘boys.'”
An incident involving a New Jersey mayor who was denied entry to the conference by the Secret Service on Monday night also spoiled the supper.
The mayor of Prospect Park, Mohamed Khairullah, was denied entry to the White House, as confirmed by a White House statement.