14 People Told Us Why Kamala Harris's Vice Presidential Win Is Important To Them
"A woman who looks like me is in a position of power I hope to hold one day, and seeing her there is proof I can win too."
On Saturday, Nov. 7, Kamala Harris made history when she became the first woman, Black person, and person of South Asian heritage elected vice president of the United States.
1. "Finally seeing a woman in such a high [position of] power makes me feel like I can breathe again. It makes me feel like maybe, just maybe, in the next four years I might be able to walk down the street alone without feeling scared, or I’ll be able to wear what I want without being seen like 'I’m asking for it.' I know some amazing change is going to happen in the next four years."
2. "My sister has wanted to be a politician since she was a kid, and seeing that a woman really did it and knowing that the pathway is open — having it be real — it just means everything."
3. "As a biracial woman of color, daughter of immigrants, and former Oakland resident, Kamala Harris’s win feels like a personal victory. After the election, for the first time in my life, I feel like the American flag actually represents me. This country can actually be a land of possibilities and equal opportunity. I feel like I can fly an American flag again after the last four years. I have never sobbed happy tears as hard in my life as I did watching Kamala address the nation for the first time. She shattered a glass ceiling. 'We the People' spoke, and we demanded change. I have hope for the future."
4. "As a Black woman, seeing Kamala win and knowing we put her there and seeing her capitalize her 'B' in 'Black' on that stage felt like recognition after hundreds of years of being at the forefront of every fight, losing the most, but staying the course and never even getting a 'thank you.' To see her win felt like my ancestors and foremothers breathed for the first time inside of me since we were cruelly brought here. I felt a part of myself heal in a way.
Yes, this is a win for women, but for Black women in this country it is so much deeper because the pain that led to this victory has lasted for centuries. We have had the power to do anything, we are everything, and our work is finally being recognized — even if it’s just in this one way."
5. "It shows me what I’ve known all along — that women of color have the power to do anything. That society may see us one way, but we’re multitalented."
6. "A woman who looks like me is in a position of power I hope to hold one day, and seeing her there is proof I can win too."
7. "I love that we finally have a woman in the White House! I love that we possibly have a chance of moving away from the 'only white men can have power' stereotype. I love that little girls have someone that they can see themselves in. I’m not gonna lie, the acceptance speech brought tears to my eyes. I’m hoping that the next four years guide this country to positive change that can last."
8. "I never thought I was treated any differently for being a woman, as I am painfully an optimist, but in the last few months, I sat down to think through my life. I was a woman in STEM and had very few female professors. Any time I was in a meeting with female leaders, they were ALWAYS asked what it was like to be a leader and be female; the men were never asked about how their gender played into leadership.
Kamala's win gives hope that we will normalize women in every room and that in 10 years, no woman will be asked what it's like to be a woman in leadership because it will be the norm. This election victory gives me hope that women WILL be equal."
9. "[Her win] means the world. Our gender is finally represented, and the fact that she is three firsts [the first woman, Black person, and person of South Asian heritage] is amazing. 'AND WHEN I MEET THOMAS JEFFERSON I'MA COMPEL HIM TO INCLUDE WOMEN IN THE SEQUEL!'"
10. "I hope that Kamala Harris making history as the first female and BIPOC vice president will inspire us to elect more women and non-white individuals to elected offices. More importantly, I hope she paves the way for our country to have a female president in the future."
11. "This is the first time in my entire life, as a mixed-race woman, that I’ve felt there is someone in a position of power who actually reminds me of myself, my family, and some of the most important aspects of my own identity. My entire life I’ve been written off as 'not this (or that) enough to be this (or that)' because I'm mixed-race. I hid as much of my identity as I could from everyone around me as a child to avoid being bullied.
Seeing a woman of color standing on that stage and feeling like she was talking directly to my daughter, and I felt like relief and safety. It was the first time in my life I listened to a politician speak without feeling any fear. Representation goes beyond seeing someone like you in the world around you — it translates into being able to trust those in power because you know they can relate to you. It means everything."
12. "I feel like she has crashed the glass ceiling for all women. I’m getting my MBA and I am in fear of not being able to get a good job once I graduate, but she has given me hope that anything is possible."
13. "As a high schooler and a POC, it shows me I can do anything in a world of horror and scrutiny. I am proud to be a young, Latina woman. I can’t wait to see the America that they have planned. BIDEN/HARRIS 2020."
14. And "I am just glad she is a woman. A woman. She represents so much. A woman in that office, in that power, the power to better a country — it means we have a chance to accomplish more as women. I honestly am so excited, even though I don't live in the United States. It means women can fucking do anything. We have always known that, but we've never gotten a chance to prove it 'cause everybody is scared a woman will do a better job than a man. I want her to be president already."
Note: Submissions have been edited for length and clarity.