Joe Biden Recalls Terrifying 1960s Public Pool Confrontation With Razor-Wielding Gangster Named "Corn Pop"


"The Root" senior writer Michael Harriot raised new questions about former Vice President Joe Biden's perspective on race relations in the wake of comments he made about slavery during Thursday's presidential debate.

Harriot recalled a story Joe Biden sometimes tells about the summer of 1962 when he was the only white lifeguard at a public pool in Wilmington, Delaware. After telling a swimmer to exercise caution on the diving board, Biden is warned that he had offended "Corn Pop," the leader of a local gang. Corn Pop next tells Biden that he will be waiting outside with a switchblade when his shift is over. Luckily, Biden defends himself by wrapping a metal chain around his arm and eventually befriends Corn Pop.

“And I looked at him, but I was smart then, I said, first of all, I said when I tell you to get off the board you get off the board, and I’ll kick you out again, but I shouldn’t have called you Esther Williams, I apologize for that," Biden said he said. Fortuitously, Corn Pop accepted Biden's apology.

Biden has told the story multiple times, including in one of his books and at a 2017 ceremony where they re-named the pool after him (video above). Harriot's tweets are particularly funny:

(Hat-tip: Mediaite)

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