COLUMN: What Biden’s VP pick means to Black America

Corey Carolina

The buzz over whom former Vice President Joe Biden will pick for his vice presidential candidate has been circulating for months. He has committed to selecting a woman as his running mate. While there are many well-qualified women candidates, there are a number of ethnic groups who are pulling for a candidate of color.

During this moment of civil unrest, there is excitement that protesters of all colors and faiths are joining together to bring attention to police brutality. Not only can America make history by having its first woman vice president, but also a Black woman could follow the first Black president, Barack Obama. There are so many people who would not have thought of the possibility of a Black president and a Black female vice president who could become president one day.

Biden should chose who he feels is ready to become president day one. The joy that former first lady Michelle Obama brought to young girls, who saw a highly educated woman in the White House, was monumental. Women have long played the supporting role in this country, and I feel it is time for more women leaders. The idea of a woman vice president is exiting and motivating, but I am ready for a woman president, as well. For a woman to be a heartbeat from the presidency is something to witness.

So whom should Biden choose for his running mate? What qualities are we looking for in a vice president? How will she navigate the Middle East, Russia, China, and Africa, where women in leadership are not a common occurrence? How will she help Biden unify the country? She will have her hands full, but that comes with the job, and I am sure she will be up to the task.

Seeing a Black woman as vice president is a great step, just as seeing the first Black first lady was. Black women have been the backbones of this country since before its founding. Black women not only took care of their own children, but many times took care of the children of the slave masters on the plantation. They not only had to be strong for the Black men during the years of slavery, but they had to endure hundreds of years of pain, loss, and sadness. During the civil rights moment, women were on the front lines, fighting for equality.

Black women have had to endure sexism, not only from white men, but from the very Black men who are suppose to protect and cherish them. Although they have had challenges, they have flourished to become one of the most powerful voting blocs. Many of us who were raised with Black grandmothers understood what strength meant. The "Great Generation" produced a population of women who were the recent motivators for great women in our country. The possibility of a Black woman being one of the top leaders in the world would make the former generations proud. It is due to their sacrifices that this is even possible.

America has no shortage of Black women who are ready to lead our country for the better, challenge the stereotypes laid upon them, and to shatter the glass of oppression. Black women have had to maneuver a man’s world and have had to maneuver a white women’s majority. With that challenge, Black women have found great allies with white women, who are an important voting group in the election. A Black woman candidate will need to draw on her abilities to activate her allies and energize the base to come out to vote.

In less than 100 days, history could be made. Make sure you cast your vote for your candidate, regardless of party. I predict this election will have one of the highest turnouts in history. Let democracy work. This is a great time to be an American.

Corey Carolina is an NSU graduate, North Tulsa entrepreneur and activist, and owner of Carolina Food Co., which produces Toasted Wine Fruit Spreads. He is also an author, his first book being "The Absent Father."

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