Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Biden on video on stuttering

And here. Biden is at 0:15, 3:00 and 5:25. It is good he is open about his stuttering in childhood. For my taste, he is a bit too American: Struggling evil and overcoming it... Of course the majority struggle hard but never overcome it! Was he just the lucky one or did he do something special to help overcome it?


Leys Geddes said...

Well done, Tom, for picking up and showing that clip of Joe Biden speaking about his stutter and then stuttering voluntarily. It's good that someone in his position is so open - but, of course, this kind of thing may also give the impression that stuttering can quite easily be 'cured' by a good dose of determination.

So do you think that stuttering associations world-wide should consider using this as an opportunity to spread the message?

Tom Weidig said...

I think it is the best opportunity for years to be honest.

However, a bit more background checks might be useful to know exactly how much he was stuttering and when he became more fluent.

I have no doubt that he does not mind as the "struggling but overcame it" image that inspires people.helps him as a politician. Would he still be stuttering, and I guarantee you he would not be VP candidate.

I agree with you that it can send the message that you can overcome it if you only work hard, and if you still stutter, you were lazy. To some degree it is true, but we are no Joe Bidens. And maybe he was just lucky.

Greg said...

A bit too American? We can't help it. A country full of rugged individualists. :)

Tom Weidig said...

Well, Europeans are also individuals, but we don't talk about the struggles that we went through explicitly. We just get on with it.

And we do not have this American dream vision: if you just try hard enough you will succeed. We would say: yes, some succeed but the majority fails! Natural-born pessimists (or realists)!

Anonymous said...

Obama seems to have a stuttering problem too at times, seriously!

Check this video out at about 2:55 ... he's asked a tough and emotional question and really seems to block!?


Mike said...

I disagree with your statement: "would he still be stuttering... ...he would not be VP candidate".

Churchill was the prime minister of U.K. and he was known to have a stutter. At that time he was one of the most influential political figures of the world.

So I think it's a little unfair to just write someone off because they have a stutter. Now naturally, it depends how bad the stutter is but that by no means means they have little future in politics.

Leys Geddes said...

But, Mike, did you ever hear Churchill stutter? Nobody I know did. So what is the point of telling people that he stuttered?

Unless they can see and hear somebody stuttering, people won't realise that we are fairly normal people who simply can't control our speech and they won't be able to judge what effect the stutter might be having on our lives.

Tom Weidig said...

>> So I think it's a little unfair to just write someone off because they have a stutter. Now naturally, it depends how bad the stutter is but that by no means means they have little future in politics.

Well, yes it is unfair, so are wars, rapes, theft, fraud, but they still happen!

I agree that it depends how severely you stutter. When I talk about a stutterer, I mostly think about someone who visibly stutters.

Anonymous said...

In America, the Stuttering Foundation of America glorifies, makes examples and touts "Famous People Who Stutter"...Marilyn Monroe, Bill Walton, Tiger Woods, Winston Churchill, Bruce Willis, Joe Biden, Ken Ventura and their latest "famous person who stutters" - Julia Roberts (and her brother).

Mike uses the word "bad" to indicate a degree for stammering. Businesses/organizations like the SFA or AIS are all about the famous-ness of the people they tout for money purposes...The average bloke who stammers is rarely - if ever - put forward as a model. Their models CANNOT BE "BAD"! $$$ is the goal... And no $$$ is going to "BAD". The reality is people hate to see us stammer as we talk. "BAD" gets pity - not $$$.

If you stammer, and you continue to stammer, you are regarded negatively/strangely in the real world. The SFA and AIS do those of us who stammer an injustice when they remove the "voice" of a stammerer. Won't change a thing in those types of organizations/businesses, though...

Unknown said...

Churchill's stuttering is mentioned by a lot of 1920s and 1930s authors: