By Emily Cousins | Staff Writer
At long last, the election has come to a close, and we have successfully voted out Donald Trump. He will try to fight it and has claimed that the election was stolen from him, but there is zero evidence these accusations are true.
I could fill up pages with why Trump was the worst president we have ever seen in American history, however, all you need to do is look up how many lies he told in office and look at the rising cases and deaths due to COVID-19.
Now that we can see light at the end of the tunnel, many of us are relieved and feel like we can call our country a democracy again. However, don’t get too comfortable. This is just the beginning.
President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris bring hope to the White House, but we can’t forget their records involving people of color. Both have discriminated against marginalized groups in the past, and we can’t just push that aside. So while this election is a victory, do not idolize these candidates.
It would be easy to blame Trump for race relations in our country, but this is simply not true. We have a long history of discriminating against BIPOC, and it is still happening today. Over time, we have not gotten better, just different in how we discriminate against minorities.
Trump did fire up white supremacists and made them feel welcome to do as they pleased. They showed up at Black Lives Matter protests with guns. A teenager in a white militia killed two BLM protestors. Trump’s supporters participated in protests in Charlottesville and ran over a group of counter protestors with a car causing a woman to die. All the while, Trump never condemned these actions.
Now, many people might think that since Trump will be leaving office soon, these problems will go away with him. This is not true. Electing Biden is just the beginning of change. If Democrats can get control of the Senate, there can be a lot of positive changes made to national law that begins to break down systemic racism.
But we can’t stop fighting and making our voices heard. Don’t stop protesting. Don’t stop calling your representatives and letting them know what change you want to see. Keep staying informed and vote in your local elections, because many of these things start in your state or your county.
The same issues such as voter suppression, police brutality, gerrymandering and poverty are still negatively affecting mainly BIPOC, no matter who the president is. So we have to keep asking for change.
This is a lifetime commitment to be an ally for BIPOC. If you feel burnt out, remember that BIPOC are tired too, but they have no choice because they have to live with it every day. They don’t have the option like we do to ignore it. That’s why we have to actively show up and be there to make sure they receive the justice and reparations they have deserved.
Now that we have a Democrat president in office, we finally have a chance to actually make the United States a country that makes equity a priority. Don’t walk away now that Biden has been elected.
Stay informed. Stay hopeful. Keep the passion for people alive and get to work.