Northwestern University

Northwestern Responds to Ex-Lecturer's Op-Ed Telling Jill Biden to Drop the ‘Dr.'

Jill Biden, wife of former Vice President Joe Biden, speaks during a meet and greet campaign event at the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Legacy in Montgomery, Alabama on March 2, 2020.
Joshua Lott / AFP) (Photo by JOSHUA LOTT/AFP via Getty

Northwestern University said it "rejects" an opinion written by a former lecturer in a Wall Street Journal piece published last week, which argued Dr. Jill Biden should "drop the doc" from her name.

Northwestern University, where Epstein was an adjunct lecturer for several years nearly two decades ago, called the views written in the piece "misogynistic."

The op-ed, written by Joseph Epstein and published Friday, refers to Biden, who has a doctorate in education, as "kiddo" and says "'Dr. Jill Biden’ sounds and feels fraudulent, not to say a touch comic." It argues such a title should be reserved for those with medical degrees.

"While we firmly support academic freedom and freedom of expression, we do not agree with Mr. Epstein’s opinion and believe the designation of doctor is well deserved by anyone who has earned a Ph.D., an Ed.D. or an M.D.," the school said in a statement. "Northwestern is firmly committed to equity, diversity and inclusion, and strongly disagrees with Mr. Epstein’s misogynistic views."

The university's English department also put out a separate statement saying Epstein's piece "casts unmerited aspersion on Dr. Jill Biden's rightful public claiming of her doctoral credentials and expertise."

"The Department rejects this opinion as well as the diminishment of anyone's duly-earned degrees in any field, from any university," the statement read.

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