By: Tanvi Mittal — Editor-in-Chief
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won the presidential election and have been declared the President-elect and Vice president-elect for the United States. This election made many firsts, but one of the biggest was Kamala Harris’s win. She is now the highest-ranked woman and person of color in the United States becoming the first woman, the first South Asian, and the first African American Vice President of the United States.
People everywhere are hopeful about her win and what this could mean for the future of the United States. SHS senior Jazmin Jennings said she is “very excited about Kamala Harris being the vice president-elect. Her being in this role opens the door for many more women after her to hold the position and it gives future candidates the confidence to choose a female running mate without worrying it may cost them the election.”
“While Kamala does not represent all of my views, seeing as she is more moderate than progressive, I know that she is respectful and open to listening to and seriously considering different ideas. Kamala is someone that we, as a country, can work with to reach our goals,”Jennings added.
Senior Lena Lee agreed with Jennings. “As the first female, South Asian, and African American person to hold the position of vice president, I feel very relieved that Kamala Harris won the election. The last four years, to say the least, have been a time of distress for many human rights activists. However, with the results of this election, I am seeing just how many people are fighting and demanding for more equality.”
“I also feel like she is a very good accomplice for Joe Biden, and she has this certain power and resistance that is inspiring for many people. I am also so grateful to be represented, as an Asian woman myself,” Lee added.
Jennings is also excited to be represented by Kamala Harris and believes her victory sends a strong message to people everywhere. “As both an African American and mixed race woman, I feel very excited to be represented at such a high level by someone like me. It makes me realize that my background and gender is no longer an obstacle that can prevent me from reaching my potential and achieving my dreams.”
“I don’t think that there will immediately be a significant difference for all women of color in terms of policy, but I think that a lot of young girls and women will now be brave enough to come forward and dare to work towards their dreams. I feel like less women will feel like they are being held back or that it is impossible for them to break that glass ceiling. Eventually, policies will have to be more fair because enough women will be pushing back against them with newfound confidence. This is a huge step towards gender equality and I can’t wait to see all the doors that are opened because of it,” she added.
SHS senior Anna Thomas is hopeful of the change that will ensue because of a Biden and Harris victory. “I believe that Kamala’s victory has signaled the start of increased racial and gender representation in higher level politics in the US. Now that the election has come to a close, I think that many people, including myself, will come to a greater understanding of the power of women in politics. I hope that Kamala’s work over the next few years shows people that women (of all races) are capable of creating lasting change and fixing unjust systems in our country,” she said.
On the other hand, Lee was concerned by the issues that surfaced because of the election. “Her victory this year sends a clear message to people all over the country, and even the world, that our country is slowly evolving. Although many wish that this process is faster, I think it is hard to make it faster with the setback we had for the last four years.”
“I know that the American Dream is not perfect, but Harris’s victory does show a glimpse of what the American Dream could become for everyone. I also believe that this victory shows that people are willing to band together and rise up to push for changes in our government. I mean, it’s crazy how Joe Biden won over 74 million votes! However, Trump also gained over 70 million votes, and the presidential election was very close. I am now starting to understand, truly, that our country needs a lot of work in order to root out systemic racism, unite the country, and create real equality for everyone,” she added.
Jennings agreed with this sentiment and said “Kamala Harris’ victory shows the world that the United States is not lost. We have come back together to fight the hate and are working to fix the deep rooted issues, especially those around race, that have been exposed to the world.”
“The fight isn’t over and as a country we are ready to move forward and mend the divide. From this election I have realized that all hope is not lost and there are still enough people in this country that are decent enough people and care about serious issues like women’s rights, LGBTQ+ rights, racial equality, and more. Hate has not yet taken over, but it still exists (there were a lot of people who voted from Trump. It was a very close election) and we now have to use our new foothold to fight back against the hate and have the country finally live up to its standard of freedom and equality. It was an important victory but we still have a lot of work to do,” she added.