From an early age, my mother instilled the importance of voting in all elections. I can remember accompanying her to vote during both municipal and presidential elections, seeing the lines of people who took pride in their right to vote. My mother explained to me the significance of municipal elections and the way our vote impacts the city and our country at large. Due to my mother’s influence as a child, on my 18th birthday I registered to vote. In 2008, I was able to vote in my first presidential election. I arrived at my local poll location at 6:30 am because I wanted to exercise my right to vote and support the candidate I truly believed in, President Barack Obama.
In a couple of weeks, our country has to elect a new President of the United States. Watching the debates between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump has resulted in a myriad of emotions and thoughts; confusion, anger, disgust were my initial emotions during the first debate. After watching the second and third debates, questions were asked, questions were answered and questions remain unanswered. During this time, I have felt uneasy as an American. The uneasiness has stemmed from the fact that someone who is an absolute contradiction of what America values is the Republican Party’s nominee. America tolerates cultural and religious differences, the right for a woman to choose how to govern her body, among several freedoms and liberties stated in our Constitution. The idea of having a wall built to keep people from coming into the United States is, at best, comical. Our country was founded on the idea of being a fusion of different nationalities, cultures and religions. The United States should continue to welcome anyone who wants to work hard and pursue their idea of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Donald Trump recently asked the African-American community, “What do we have to lose?”, in order to gain support. Well, Mr. Trump we have an enormous amount to lose if you were to win the presidential election. America would lose the very fabric that makes our country so amazing. I have another newsflash for you Mr. Trump: America does not need your assistance to be great again. The African-American community does not need your assistance to save us from the “inner city.” The United States of America has always been a great country. The United States of America is not a perfect nation, but I believe we would have a better chance of becoming an even greater nation, if we stand by Secretary Hillary Clinton.
I plan to be on the right side of history when the dust settles. Reflecting on my childhood and young adulthood, I’m grateful my mother taught me at an early age to confidently and boldly use my voice. My voice will be heard in this presidential election as I cast my ballot, I stand with her!