Joe Biden: A Lot Of Inner-City And Rural Black Americans Don’t Know How To Get On Internet And Register For Vaccine
Earlier this week, Joe Biden attended his first town hall meeting as president, where he discussed erasing $50,000 in student loan debt (he won’t do it), the stimulus package (it’s coming), and access to vaccines.
A doctor in the town hall asked Biden why just 3 percent of Black people and 5 percent of Latinos had received the vaccine, despite being two of the communities hardest hit by covid-19.
Biden had a two-part response. First, he spoke of the Black community’s longstanding mistrust of the medical community for being used historically as “guinea pigs and other experiments.” Then he addressed the lack of walk-up vaccine centers for marginalized communities who do not have access to cars, according to Remezcla, a U.S.-based Latin American media company serving the millennial market.
“Not everybody in the community–in the Hispanic and the African-American community, particularly in rural areas that are distant and/or inner-city districts, know how to use — know how to get online to determine how to get in line for that covid vaccination at the Walgreens or at the particular store,” Biden said, according to the White House transcript of the town hall meeting.
Some think Biden disrespected Black people by suggesting they were too technically inept to go online and register for the vaccine.
On Twitter, a debate ensued over what Biden said and what he actually meant. Some defended him: “And he’s right. Older POC, especially in rural areas, have been left behind in the tech era and finally someone with THE biggest platform is speaking on it,” one tweeter responded.
Another posted, “That’s not what he said – but what he did say, IS TRUE.”
One person retweeted another user’s tweet that said, “I really really really am not playing devils advocate here, but literally none of my older family members even own computers. And if they didn’t have access to younger people like me, they wouldn’t even know how to sign up and that pisses me off so bad!”
Another agreed, “I’m just gonna leave this here, because for a large group of African Americans in my rural town, he is absolutely correct. Thanks to racism.”
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What Biden may have been trying to say is that older generations are not as tech-savvy as younger ones. In a follow-up response, the president clarified, “It’s all about trying to more rationalize in detail so ordinary people, like me, can understand,” Biden stated. “I mean that sincerely. I mean, you know, my grandchildren can use that online — you know, make me look like I’m in, you know, the seventh century.”
Black millennials are early tech adopters, often driving tech trends.