Monday, May 3, 2021

The official student newspaper of Methodist Ladies' College, est. 2020

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness; Hope for America?

Though we have long been aware of the progressive and egalitarian vision of US President Joe Biden, I hope that this article serves as an open letter of commendation to the new captain of the American people. 

As you will be cognisant of, the world was taken by storm in August of 2020 when President Biden announced Kamala Harris as his running mate. As a woman of colour, this placement marked the possibility of many ‘firsts’ in the White House. Thus, Biden and his campaign bore the palanquin for the American Dream in the gripping and momentous 2020 elections. 

With the sweeping victory of the democrats last November, the hopes and faith of the American people seemed to be restored and then-President-elect Joe Biden played the harbinger of agency and democracy.

The inauguration in January was deeply moving for the disenfranchised and the patriotic. In a sense, it paid respects to the victims of the previous administration and its policies. Kamala Harris was able to not only secure her position as first female Vice President of the US but also, the highest ranking woman in America; an inspiration for women everywhere. As is evident, the event was a triumph – not to mention Michelle Obama’s monochrome masterpiece.

Former First Lady Michelle Obama, COVID-safe and clad in a maroon pantsuit.
Source: Drew Angerer/ Getty Images

MLC senior students will remember Ms Vernon’s apt quotation of Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman’s words: “For there is always light, if only we’re brave enough to see it.” The statement encapsulates the perspective of the current administration and their actions so far. Steps¹ have been taken to counter the pandemic (the disease that will not be named), and the Affordable Care Act (ACA²) has been reopened. 

All this being said, the particular stride that I wish to discuss is the diversity of the proposed³ Biden Cabinet, which has exceeded all past administrations. Referring to the graphic below, the current President conveys a message to all youths within and beyond America; such levels of diversity represent opportunity and achievement in our futures and provide a flicker of candlelight in the dark tunnel of adolescent uncertainty. Ergo, I simply applaud the efforts of the 2021 US administration, which have greatly furnished my optimism. To paraphrase the talented Amanda Gorman, the new dawn now blooms as they free it. 

Comparison of Demographics across Biden, Trump and Obama Administrations.
Credit: Zach Levitt and Audrey Carlsen/NPR

1. The ‘National Strategy for the COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness’ from the US was released on 21/1/21.

2. Allowance of health care coverage for Americans. Signups reopened between 15/1/21 and 15/5/21.

3.The cabinet still awaits confirmation.

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