Throughout my adult life, in regards to politics, I’ve always found myself in the middle. I don’t identify as a democrat, republican, or any other registered party. I often find my beliefs, morals, and values to be split down the middle of a two party system. Moreover, I also split between wanting to involve myself in politics even as a spectator and not wanting to even pay attention to it. However, it’s the balance that helps me see a clearer picture of it all.
One thing that I put the most stock in when it comes to political leaders is how they lead by example and what they represent and what that representation means to me as a 'sometimes-involved spectator'. When President Obama won, I was fortunate enough to meet him at a rally, listen to him speak, and shake his hand afterwards. Even though I didn’t agree with everything he ran on, I was captured by what he represented as a black man with an Islamic name. For me, as a black man with not only an islamic name but also as a muslim, he was a figure that I could identify with and be inspired by.
Kamala Harris caught my eye the same way. Again, not agreeing with her totally, but knowing that my daughters, my nieces, my students, and little girls around the world could see a representation of themselves and be inspired to one day raise the bar even higher than her. I also watched the excitement from the ladies of older generations, with their “chucks & pearls” and thought to myself how happy they must be to have witnessed the world go from fighting for a woman’s right to choose her own health decisions to a woman, of any color, being chosen to one of the highest decision making positions in the country.
The late great Tupac was quoted saying “I’m not saying I'm gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will change the world.” Though Tupac wasn’t a perfect man I think he was accurate in this. I do believe he has inspired many world changers since his death. I wouldn’t be surprised if Vice President Kamala Harris has some Tupac on her playlist but I’m sure President Obama does. Each of these individuals changed the world in their own way and passed that inspiration to the next man and next woman. I’m just happy that my son and daughters were able to witness it and I pray they are as inspired as I feel on this morning after.