Opinion

Diversity won the midterms

Congress is now comprised of more women and racial and religious minorities, making it more representative of the country's population as a whole. 

I will never forget the moment Trump was elected. The disbelief permeated through red and blue districts alike. The fear was palpable in soup kitchens, synagogues and mosques.

Immigrant families, African-American families and LGBTQ+ families questioned what was ahead for them. The moment of Trump’s election was a shock we thought we’d never recover from.

I pride myself on being able to always find something hopeful to hold onto in any situation, but on November 8th, 2016 I was certainly struggling. The glorious expanse of freedoms we enjoyed in America seemed that they would soon become narrower and narrower. Democrats thought the world was over and this sense of disappointment and hopelessness persisted in America until a few mere hours ago.

Though the Democrats didn’t have the overwhelming victory that they hoped for, they had an incredibly successful night nonetheless. Yes, claiming the House majority was likely the biggest achievement of the night but let’s not forget the small, yet powerful victories that transpired on Tuesday.

101 women were elected to the House of Representatives, the largest concentration of women the house has ever had. In the roughly dozen articles I’ve read about the election results, I only saw this fact mentioned once. But this alone is cause for major celebration. This isn’t just a large number of congresswomen. This proves that people across the country are finally recognizing women as viable leaders. This proves to little girls that their dreams of being national politicians aren’t childhood pipe dreams; they could be realities. This proves that this country might be ready to start taking women’s issues to heart. Even in Trump’s America, women are rising just as they promised they would. Maybe 2018 really is the year of the woman.

The Muslim, LGBTQ+, Native American, African American, and Latinx populations will now all be represented in Congress. The very people that feared their demise was coming near when Trump was elected are now standing tall on Capitol Hill. Islamaphobes, homophobes, racists and xenophobes have, and maybe always will, try to strike fear into their fellow Americans, but last night minorities prevailed and no amount of hate can take that away from them.

We have a Congress ahead of us that is more reflective of the American people than ever before. Let’s not forget this victory in a month or a year or simply the next time Trump does or says something outrageous. Minorities, liberals and women had a win. And not just a win for now. A win forever. A hundred years in the future we will still be able to harken back to this day and remember it as the moment the nation decided to put its faith in minorities. 

It’s easy to get discouraged by politics. It’s easy to think that this country has dug a hole to deep to ever get out of. But I hope this election shows Americans that this nation is truly always in our hands. For those who worried that your vote was insignificant, I hope you ride this high for a while knowing you helped make it all happen.

Dana is a junior studying theatre. What are your takeaways from the midterms? Send your analysis to us at opinion@dailycardinal.com.

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