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  • Olufolake Majekodunmi

Is Biden's Inauguration Something to Celebrate?

Updated: Jun 28, 2021

After four chaotic years under the leadership of former President Donald Trump, Joe Biden was inaugurated on January 20. Meanwhile, the election came at the cost of the results being tarnished by Trump's claims of fraud.

Trump's abuse of power, racist rhetoric, and strategic lies stained his presidency. As we take on a new leader, it is important to acknowledge that Trump had a great influence over millions of Americans and the people of Congress.

America initially granted Trump that power and continuously did so for the entirety of his term. Now, as we move forward in the direction of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, one question remains unanswered. What can we expect from their presidential term?

Joe Biden selected Kamala Harris as his running mate, making her the first woman and African American and South Asian to be vice president of the United States. Although this is a great historic moment, its impact remains in question.

However, Biden has made considerable changes as soon as he was elected. He stopped the withdrawal of the United States from the World Health Organization and re-entered the country into the Paris Agreement.

Biden has also achieved a record of the most diverse Cabinet with 50 percent of the Cabinet nominees being people of color. This feels like a sudden change after the Trump administration's responses to racism and inequality in America that resulted in mass protests.

According to a study by Pew Research Center, 56 percent of Americans believe that Trump made race relations worse. During the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement that occurred this past summer, the Trump administration openly condemned the movement and labelled it as a “symbol of hate.

He also referred to protesters as “thugs.” In addition, Trump refused to reject the support of the Proud Boys, a popular white supremacist group. He also told his supporters that breached the Capitol in Washington D.C., “We hear you, We love you.”

Protective fencing up at the US Capitol, several days after a pro-Trump mob stormed the building. Photo by Ian Hutchinson.

The four, long years that people of color, especially black people, endured was unexplainable. It felt like every news article headline was about how Trump was a slap in face to minorities because of the white privilege that stands tall in this country.

Although we have been liberated from the days of Trump, we must not get too comfortable. Many politicians enabled Trump, even with his lies and inappropriate behavior. It took an insurrection for America to realize how unfit Trump was for office.

We must hold President Biden accountable. Biden’s inauguration does not mean that racial inequality does not exist in America. Some pressing areas, for example, that need attention and have long been ignored include police reform and the deteriorating American education system.

While the election win of President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris might be considered something to celebrate, there is much work to be done.

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