CORAL GABLES, FLA. (WSVN) - Former Vice President Joe Biden visited the University of Miami to discuss sexual assault and gender-based violence.
Biden came to South Florida to speak out about serious issues that are especially important to talk about on a college campus, Tuesday.
“Guys, any man on campus who sees a fraternity brother take in a drunken coed up the stairs and doesn’t walk up and say, ‘Not in my house’ is a damn coward,” Biden said. “Flat, simple coward.”
Several colleges, including UM, have taken part in the nationwide campaign called It’s On Us.
In addition to Biden, UM students heard from survivors and administrators about resources on campus.
Biden took to the podium to urge responsibility for both men and women when it comes to sexual assault.
“You see a drunk roommate, you see her fall all over herself — you have an obligation! Grab her by the arm and say, ‘No, you’re not going there,'” Biden said.
UM is a familiar place for presidential contenders like Mitt Romney and Hillary Clinton. Even though Biden’s name has been floated as a possible 2020 candidate, high-level politics played little in his speech.
“When a guy who ended up becoming our national leader said, ‘I can grab a woman anywhere and she likes it,'” Biden said. “They asked me if I’d like to debate this gentleman, and I said no. I said, ‘If we were in high school, I’d take him behind the gym and beat the hell out of him.'”
Biden made another jab. “I’ve been in a lot of locker rooms my whole life. I’m a pretty damn good athlete,” he said. “Any guy that talked that way was usually the fattest, ugliest SOB in the room.”
So will a talk by the septuagenarian politico make a difference to college students?
“It’s really about coming out of this room and talking to the others that are the ones that need to hear it,” said UM student Caroline Christopher. “The people in Greek life, the frat brothers that are not here, the student athletes that are not here.”
“I think a lot of people came just to see Joe Biden and didn’t really realize what the event was about, and now those people can take back his message to other people on campus,” said UM student Jack Camoratto.
This was not a completely non-political trip. Biden will take part in a Democratic fundraiser sometime during his South Florida visit.
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