Yes, of course Biden and Harris exist in the sense that they are living, breathing human beings. But Kamala Harris’ recent appropriation of a story that Martin Luther King told to claim she was a civil rights warrior as a toddler was just the latest confirmation that she, like Joe Biden, is at this point less an actual personality than a repository of poses, slogans, and symbols — a walking, talking grab-bag of Leftist positions. In sublimating their actual individual existences and becoming living thumb tacks to post up Leftist talking points, Biden and Harris demonstrate not only their own hollowness and dishonesty, but that of the Left in general.
As Matt Margolis noted Monday, not only did Harris’ story of calling for “Fweedom” as a little girl suspiciously resemble one King told, but she has also previously displayed a “willingness to exaggerate her personal story.” She “exaggerated her personal history with busing when she attacked Joe Biden (all but accusing him of being a racist) for his past opposition to racially integrating school via mandated busing,” and has “recently has been accused of lying about celebrating Kwanzaa when she was growing up when it wasn’t even invented until two years after she was born. There is also photographic evidence that her family celebrated Christmas.”
This resembled Biden’s being caught out during his 1988 presidential campaign for not only plagiarizing Leftist British politician Neil Kinnock, but essentially posing as Kinnock himself, falsely claiming Kinnock’s humble origins in a coal mining family as his own, and presenting as elements of his life story details that were actually true of Kinnock, but not of Biden.
In appropriating Neil Kinnock’s life story in 1988, Biden was doing the same thing Harris was doing both when she stole King’s anecdote and when she claimed that her family was celebrating Kwanzaa back in the mid-Sixties: Both were attempting to make their life stories conform to the Left’s fantasies. A middle-class career politician from Delaware who became one of the elite and made himself fantastically rich in the public service is just the worst kind of front man for a program of massive government expansion, higher taxes, increased regulations, and the rapidly increasing erosion of individual freedom. But a hardscrabble man of the people, determined that ordinary folks just like him get a fair shake? Yeah, that could work. And so even though Biden never used his Kinnock tropes after he was caught out, he made a variation on the theme a staple of his self-presentation, to the extent that Trump mocked him for constantly claiming he was from the working-class Scranton that he had left as a child.
Harris, meanwhile, is the daughter of a professor of economics and a biomedical scientist. As a young attorney, she was widely known to have been given some plum promotions by the man she was dating, Willie Brown, who was then the Speaker of the California Assembly and later became Mayor of San Francisco. Her actual career is marked by privilege and preferment, so instead of getting the straight story, we hear about how she was fighting for freedom even before she could say the word, and celebrating the just-invented holiday of black pride even before most of the country had heard of it.
Biden and Harris are empty vessels, hollowed out of what is genuine and filled instead with half-truths, exaggerations, and distortions that reinforce the Left’s idea of the United States as a hellhole of racial discrimination, class discrimination, and hyper-rich fat cats enriching themselves even more on the backs of hard-working ordinary people, with only a benign and all-encompassing government able to save the day. This is, of course, the mythology of Marx, Lenin, Mao and the rest: the proletariat is the sinless working class that suffers unjustly under the yoke of the oppressor until it rises up, breaks its chains, and institutes a just society. For Marxist leaders, that is a fantasy as well, a justification for maintaining themselves as an oppressive elite class while claiming to be the embodiment of the people’s quest for justice.
Although of course neither would say they were Marxists, Biden and Harris have made themselves over into the embodiment of that sinless savior class, and are ready to serve as tools for the implementation of a socialist regime in the U.S. that will concentrate power in the hands of a small group of oligarchs just as efficiently, or more so, as any Marxist regime ever did. It doesn’t matter who Biden and Harris really are, or were. All that matters is the function that they serve in advancing the Leftist cause. That’s why no one on the Left held stealing from Kinnock against Biden when he ran again in 2020, and it’s also why Kamala Harris will face no backlash from the Left for stealing from King. Everyone on their side knows it’s all a pose, a means to an end: the sustaining of the Leftist mythology. The Biden and Harris that the world sees are fitting symbols of the lies and false claims upon which every Leftist regime is founded.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 21 books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is Rating America’s Presidents: An America-First Look at Who Is Best, Who Is Overrated, and Who Was An Absolute Disaster. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.