All Skin Folk, Aint Kinfolk: Kamala Harris 2020?

As a black woman, I was overjoyed when I heard that Kamala Harris, a fellow black woman was running for president. The fact that she attended an HBCU was icing on top of the cake because I have a similar education. Part of me wanted to pop the champagne bottles and scream “BLACK GIRL MAGIC” loud enough for the whole world to hear.

As a new voter and a Pre-Law student, I know the importance of checking to see what the candidate stands for and making sure that aligns with the values you have as a citizen of this country. And hopefully, the citizens of America have learned that the elections are indeed important. (cough cough, the longest government shutdown in history.) Our country is in a pivotal place, and it is our responsibility to make sure we are on the right side of it. So in order to fulfill my societal duties, I conducted my research on Kamala Harris.

When conducting research on politicians, especially members of house and senate, I like to check background first such as jobs, education, and then check the way they vote. Harris checks out in these areas, she graduated from Howard University as a double major in Political Science and Economics and then went on the law school from there. Although Harris was just elected into the Senate in 2017, Harris has been in elected positions since 2011. That is where the problem begins.

Harris’ elected positions have been positions of prosecution, in this America, these positions can be public enemy #1 to the black people in this country. First, Harris was District Attorney in San Francisco, then moved on to Attorney General of California. During her time as the DA and the AG her conviction rates were astounding. Harris also made truancy illegal in the state of California, defended California’s choice to deny a transgender inmate the right to a gender reassignment surgery, defended wrongful convictions that have proven to be obtained by official misconduct, defended the death penalty in California as AG, even though at one point she opposed it and more.

As a woman of color who knows how the justice system disproportionally affects people of color, this raised a red flag in my head about our good sis, Kamala. I know that she knows the ramifications of these decisions and what type of people they affect. So I can’t wrap my mind around why she thought these decisions would go unnoticed or unchecked.

I do want to give credit to Senator Harris for some of the truly progressive things she’s done such as re-entry programs for low-level offenders, voting for relief for struggling homeowners and her passion for access to higher education. Because these are things that are problems in this country, that my good sis had the power and the GUTS to do something about, which is more than we can say for other people in the political arena. 

As black voters, it is our responsibility that we vote in the best interest of us. Our interest has never been the priority of this country and now that we realize that, we must do our part in making this country a better place to live in. I encourage EVERYONE to educate yourself on the candidates that pop up in this next election, we can't have any repeats.