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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M utility Gavin Grahovac (9) throws the ball during A&Ms game against Georgia on Friday, April 26, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
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Texas A&M pitcher Evan Aschenbeck (53) reacts after throwing the final strike out during Texas A&M’s game against Mississippi State on Saturday, March 23, 2024, at Olsen Field. (Chris Swann/ The Battalion)
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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Students react to Kamala Harris’ historic election

Female+POC+In+Office
Courtesy
Female POC In Office

Kamala Harris claimed her place in American history after being elected as the 49th Vice President of the United States.
Nearly four days after Election Day, on Saturday, Nov. 7, it was announced that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are projected to be the country’s next president and vice president. With this successful presidential ticket, Harris, a mixed-race woman and the daughter of Indian and Jamaican immigrants, will not only be the first woman but also the first Black and Asian American person to hold the position. Harris’ ascent to the vice presidency is a historic feat, coming shortly after the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage and following a year of tumultuous race relations.
Industrial engineering junior Maya Agnihotri said though she’s relieved that representation has finally made its way into the White House, Harris’ history as a prosecutor and defiance to reduce California’s prison population shouldn’t be overlooked.
“I’m very glad there is finally representation,” Agnihotri said. “Especially having a woman of color in such a high position, that is definitely something I am happy about. At the same time, we can acknowledge what she’s done pertaining to putting innocent people in jail for drug use and more. But I am quite excited because our past vice presidents have been nothing but white males, and we need a good change.”
Ashley Justynski, an international affairs graduate student and graduate assistant for Texas A&M’s Women’s Research Center, said Harris’ intersectional representation for both women and people of color is critical as America works toward the acceptance of people in power who have historically been underrepresented in the government.
“Harris being the vice presidential-elect is a monumental thing for our nation,” Justynski said. “She’s a woman of color and the daughter of immigrants, and I am also those things. It’s great to see a representation of a woman who’s not white. It’s one step closer to gender parity in the government… hopefully, one day we can have a female president and other women in these positions.”
Justynski said she observed the steps America has progressively taken since Trump’s election that led to Harris’ nomination and triumph.
“Right after Trump was elected, there was a huge women’s march all over the country,” Justynski said. “In the past four years, we’ve all spoken out against what we don’t agree with and have voiced our concerns through the polls and the election. I hope now, America will become a more equitable place where minorities have more of a voice, and this new representation will allow for these issues to be addressed.”
Gemini Creason-Parker, a sociology Ph.D. candidate and teaching assistant, said she has reservations about Biden choosing Harris as his presidential running mate.
“Kamala seems like a very capable woman,” Creason-Parker said. “My primary concern regarding her selection is the motivation behind Biden’s choosing for her. While I’m ecstatic to have a woman of color in office, I fear to some extent she might have been used as a pawn to appease certain voters to get her there, and that is infuriating. However, there’s no way to know if that is completely the case.”
Creason-Parker said she thinks America will be heading in a new direction when Biden and Harris take office next January.
“Considering what has transpired over the last four years, referring to [Trump’s] hateful rhetoric and fear-mongering towards some Americans, I think these next four years with Kamala will primarily involve a lot of healing and undoing of what’s been done, implemented or made worse by the current administration,” Creason-Parker said.
Creason-Parker said Harris’ election is a jubilant feat, and women of color finally have someone in office to reflect their demographic.
“Being Native American, to see a woman of color in-office is to be able to see myself in a position of power,” Creason-Parker said. “That’s not only important for people my age, but also for children to see. It inspires them and makes them believe that they can do more when society is constantly battering against them. They can look to Kamala’s position and see someone like themselves in a position of power.”

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