America was sick before the pandemic even neared our shores.
As far as I’m concerned, 2020 will be one of the years people will look back on and grimace. This year has been filled with terror and malice, for as progressive as we claim to be, we couldn’t stand further away from just doing alright.
We are tired of repeating ourselves.
We were founded upon the ideal of “liberty and justice for all.” Now, we embody an attitude of liberty and justice for a select few.
Growing up, I understood the magnitude of the sacrifice that has gone into making this country great. I have witnessed the selfless service my family and others have made to make the country I’m living in possible. To say I am grateful would be an understatement, but it would be ignorant to suggest that America is anywhere near done with progressing.
One of the many things I love about our country is our long history of camaraderie and resilience. Through world wars and terrorism, we have found more ways than one to unite under pressing circumstances. Countless acts of legislation and social movements have progressed our country forward, but now we’ve hit yet another roadblock of oppression and obstacles.
Joe Biden is our President-elect. Regardless of who likes it or not, America has much bigger fish to fry than cries of hoaxes and zombie voters. Social, economic and environmental issues are smothering our nation. While it is my hope that our next president does the best possible job he can do, the power still remains to the people. We can bicker and argue over the legitimacy of this outcome, but one thing remains: the other pandemics across America. It’s up to us to ensure our elected officials remain in check.
Biden needs to be accountable and tend to every single ailment we’re facing.
Recent surges in the COVID-19 pandemic are having an even stronger grip on American life. Cases are reaching record levels and more lives are being put on the line. What used to look like a curve is becoming now more of a steep slope of skyrocketing outbreaks. Recent reports of promising vaccines are making way toward American bodies and nationwide collaboration has never been more imperative. Vaccinations and social distancing aren’t an infringement upon our rights but amplifies them even more.
Another Race War
It is inspiring to witness the Black Lives Matter movement at such a pivotal time in my life, but on another note, I’m disappointed to listen to this rhetoric again, in person, instead of reading it in a textbook. One would think protesting for human rights would be medieval at this point, but it is still a household topic. Persecution isn’t something that can be wiped away with an Instagram post and a motivational speech. It’s embedded into our everyday lives. It’s important to realize this pattern of social injustice has been ingrained into Americans’ heads for decades. It isn’t replaced as easily as a lightbulb.
Immigration has been a heated controversy for years. It’s no argument that the issue that lies at our borders isn’t something to be belittled. There are children in cages, after all. While the rules and restrictions of this pressing issue is up for discussion, it’s important to remember where our American roots are from: all over the place. Suggesting anyone is an undeserving alien would be hypocritical. America is a place of chance and prosperity, not an elitist competition.
The Polar Bears
The world is both melting and burning. Carbon emissions are catastrophic. People are dying. This issue no longer qualifies itself as a conspiracy, but as a ticking bomb that is nearing detonation. We would patch a hole in our house’s wall, we would replace a broken car part, we would mend a broken arm. Weshouldheal the place we call home. Why ignore a threat that implicates us all?
These issues and many more require the incoming president’s full attention. America doesn’t have the accountability we need to prosper. Biden should (and will) be responsible for moving the country toward better survival and health.
I am proud of the amendments that have been made over our Constitution's lifespan, but I’m disappointed in the racial obstacles that lie between them. I am humbled by our country’s experts’ race toward research and understanding of a virus plaguing our nation but I am saddened by our lack of compassion for those at risk around us. I admire the strength and courageousness of our immigrant founders but I am appalled at the treatment of current refugees at our borders. I am inspired by our world’s determination to improve our climate state but I am alarmed at the immense disregard for the melting ice caps and tumultuous fires.
America is a place of aspirations and achievement. It is not a place that turns a blind eye to persecution and selfishness.
Americans need to keep holding Americans accountable to heal.
Kaelin Connor is an opinion writer at The Battalion and is a psychology junior.