Republican incumbent Mike Pence and Democratic challenger Kamala Harris are scheduled to face off in the only vice presidential debate 9 p.m. Wednesday. Both candidates are following the drama-filled Sept. 29 showdown between GOP President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden.
Harris is the junior senator in California since 2017. She attended Howard University, making her the first White House candidate who is an HBCU graduate. Harris is also a member for the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.
Harris can relate to a lot of young educated women of color in today’s society, where women are now known to demand a seat at the table as opposed to asking for it. She represents a culture that could be unfamiliar to some people outside of the Black community, spreading knowledge about the misheard and giving hope to those who feel as though they are the forgotten people of America.
Several people interviewed before the debate anticipated serious and well-articulated debate between Harris and former Indiana Gov. Pence, unlike the nonstop 90-minute verbal brawl between Trump and Biden. The same people interviewed said they saw clips or scenes but not the entire first of three presidential debates.
Tyra Vaughn, a Bowie State University senior who resides in that Maryland city, said, “I know [Harris] won’t be the first woman to go against someone in the presidential debate, but she’s the first ‘sistah’ to go and represent us! I have to go see this.”
The people interviewed all attend historically Black colleges and universities and are also members of sororities and fraternities. Candance Jones, a member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., attends Morgan State University.
Jones of Newark, N.J., said she will be hosting a debate viewing party in support of Harris: “Different sororities and fraternities will be there to encourage their fellow soror.”
Harris’ personal connection is with millennials who are people of color. She personalizes her experiences to connect with the daily struggles people face pertaining to school and the daily struggles of being successful in today’s world.
The writer is a student at Morgan State University School of Global Journalism and Communication and lives in Prince George’s County, Md.