Last week at the Democratic National Convention, California Senator Kamala Harris made history by accepting the Democratic nomination for the vice presidency of the United States. Kamala Harris is the third woman to be on a major party ticket for the vice presidency following Democrat Geraldine Ferraro in 1984 and Republican Sarah Palin in 2008. Harris, however, is the first woman of color to receive this honor and has already entered the history books with this nomination.
Kamala Harris, pronounced ‘comma-la,’ will likely face extreme critiques and racist and sexist attacks as she attempts to make history. Already, former San Francisco mayor Willie Brown has written two op-eds discussing their past personal relationship and even going so far as urging Harris not to accept the nomination.
Harris is already facing critiques from the right with their birther attacks on her and her family. Harris’s mother was an immigrant from India and her father an immigrant from Jamaica. These baseless attacks are essentially birtherism 2.0, they didn’t work when hurled against Barack Obama and hopefully they will not work now.
Members of the left and the more progressive wing of the Democratic Party have critiques of Harris from her time as a San Francisco district attorney and as the attorney general of California. Since Harris was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2016, she has gone to great lengths to show her evolution on criminal justice issues. She and Joe Biden both have begun to detail policies that are much more evolved than their past practices and beliefs.
The threat that the current president and his administration pose to the American public is so severe, left leaning Democrats and now a growing number of Republicans are joining forces with moderate Democrats in order to defeat the president and members of his party in November.
Harris may not be a perfect candidate. I defy anyone to find one who is. However, what she and Joe Biden have shown over the course of their careers is that they believe in working with people who are experts in their respective fields, they are willing to listen to opinions other than their own, and they are willing to learn from their past mistakes. A Biden-Harris ticket may not seem perfect to some, but now is the time to do a real “cost-benefit” analysis of the two campaigns. The president has shown the American public time and time again that he does not respect the Constitution or the citizens who believe in it. He rules by chaos and corruption. And he lacks a moral compass for himself and has left the country adrift.
I implore you to do your research on the candidates. Think clearly about your needs and wants. And develop a voting plan for Nov. 3. The future of our democracy depends on you.
Christina Greer, Ph.D., is an associate professor at Fordham University, the author of “Black Ethnics: Race, Immigration, and the Pursuit of the American Dream,” and the co-host of the podcast FAQ-NYC.