VP Harris Inspires MHS Women

Amelia Knopp, Staff Writer

On Wednesday, January 20, the world watched as Kamala Harris was sworn in as the first female vice president of the United States. Harris’s election embodies many firsts – as she is the first woman, first Black and first South Asian candidate to hold the office of vice president. Harris’s historic inauguration has impacted women around the globe and has inspired her supporters here at Manhattan High School. 

As an Asian American woman, junior Jecca Park is hopeful that Harris’s high position in office will highlight the importance of diverse government representation.

“In general, I barely see any Asian Americans in politics or even in the media…which I think is unfortunate,” Park said. 

Harris’s election is significant to Park because it opens possibilities for girls with diverse backgrounds. 

“A major role in our community being fulfilled by an Asian American is really inspiring for me, to know that it’s possible,” Park said. 

Sophomore Jazmyn Lowery believes that Harris’s election sends a positive message to young girls. According to Lowery, Harris’s election can “show girls that they can do anything.”

As an African American woman, Lowery said she is hopeful that Harris will bring issues important to minority and LGBTQ+ communities to the forefront. 

“I think [Harris’s achievement] gives motivation, especially to girls who are African American or South Asian, so she can set an example for them, and they can watch what she’s done, and see where she’s coming from,” Lowery said. 

Sophomore Grace Bannister admires Vice President Harris for her determination through adversity. 

“I think being a woman in politics, you can be portrayed in a certain way by the media if you advocate for yourself… so showing that she’s not afraid of that backlash is really powerful, and it shows a lot of confidence that I think can uplift a lot of women,” Bannister said. 

Bannister hopes that Harris will use her platform to promote unity within the country.

According to Bannister, “[Harris] has done some bipartisan work that’s a really good message to send, [and conveys] that working as a collective to achieve an overall greater goal is really important.”

Junior Grace Hutchinson believes that Vice President Harris will encourage women to exceed expectations. 

“[Harris] is breaking down all of the boundaries and all of the walls that have been put in front of her,” Hutchinson said.  

Although Hutchinson is disappointed that it took this long to elect a female to the White House, she thinks that Vice President Harris will teach the country valuable lessons.

“We should learn what it looks like to be a good leader and how to be a strong, powerful, independent woman in today’s society,” Hutchinson said. 

As an Indian woman, freshman Anvesha Sharda views Kamala Harris as a role model. 

“What’s so exciting about [Harris’s election] is that you have someone to look up to and someone to visualize as yourself,” Sharda said. 

Sharda especially admires the message of empowerment and motivation that Harris shared in her November victory speech, when she stated, “While I may be the first woman in this office, I will not be the last.” 

According to Sharda, Harris’s persistence through her political journey opens doors for girls. 

“When you see all of the adversities and all the challenges that she’s overcome in her position, it makes it a lot easier for you to believe that you can get there, too,” Sharda said.