By Sonali Gupta
On November 7th, 2020, a woman of color named Kamala Harris was elected to be the Vice President of the United States. Yeah, you read that right. Sometimes my inherent brown girl trait of iron deficiency kicks in, and I get a little dizzy thinking about it -needing to sit down and pinch myself to make sure that this is actually real. The first woman and person of color, with roots in India and Africa, is going to co-command the country for the next 4 years and I get so giddy just thinking about it. I don’t think I realized what that would mean to me until it was finally announced.
When I opened Instagram on that sunny Saturday morning, I saw countless videos of the New York skyline with a soundtrack so beautiful consisting of cheers, whistles, hoots, and any other celebratory sounds a human can make. I saw the video of Kamala Harris in her running clothes calling Joe Biden saying, “Joe, we won! We did it!” I saw videos of champagne pops, car parades, people hugging, crying of happiness, falling to their knees in awe, and people across the whole world cheering the Biden-Harris campaign onwards. Life was just so different that day. It was like all the losses of 2020 had redeemed themselves in that one single moment of victory. Although the popular vote showed Donald Trump to be right behind, there was still so much hope restored in our hearts, and most importantly in our country.
I would be lying if I said I didn’t tear up or full on sob every few hours because of the impact electing Kamala Harris would have on me. As a woman of color in a country which has countlessly proven itself to be racist and sexist in the roots of its systems, for the first time ever I felt like I could make a positive change in my own country; not through being in office, but through any profession I chose to pursue in the future. As she so beautifully and passionately spoke on the night of her victory, “But while I may be the first woman in this office, I will not be the last, because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities.” There was finally someone on that podium who looked like me, and even though it took multiple lifetimes, representation finally existed in the White House.
I hope that this light of hope shines all the way to India, and lets the little girls there know that while society, and most of the time men, have stunted our growth since the beginning of time, nothing can, and nothing will stop us. I hope that this serves as a reminder and constant affirmation that women are indeed the providers of all life, light, growth, and healing. If an Indian woman can change the course of history in a country across the world from India, then an Indian girl in India can most certainly do so as well.
Of course, we can’t forget about the upgrade in food that now all politicians will receive as well. The White House chefs won’t know what hit them when those dinner requests of paneer tikka masala and dosa start coming through. So America, bow down and say Namaste to your new Madam Vice President.
About Sonali Gupta
My name is Sonali Gupta and I’m a freshman at Loyola Marymount University in LA. I am a Marketing major and Dance minor and in my free time I love to make dance videos, write poetry, and reflect about the world around me. If you want to see more of my content, you can follow me on Instagram @sonali__g