I remember telling my music teacher in second grade that I wanted to become the first Black female president right after President Barack Obama took office. I told him that if President Obama could do it, then so could I.
Watching former President Obama get elected to office was a moment I’ll never forget. Although I was in second grade and didn’t fully comprehend the concept of politics, seeing the joy and excitement on my parents’ faces when they found out that he won made me happy.
The next day at school, all the other Black students were excited and it was all we could talk about because it was something historic and special to us. While some saw this election just like the rest, for Black Americans, it was a remarkable victory.
When news of Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer’s retirement came out, I hoped that this would be a historic victory for the Black community, especially Black women.
During his 2020 presidential campaign, President Joe Biden promised that, if he had the chance, he would nominate the first Black woman to the United States Supreme Court. With Breyer’s retirement looming, Biden can uphold his pledge, allowing Black women and girls to see someone like them serving in the U.S. Supreme Court.
Despite the lack of trust I have in our government and how it constantly fails the Black community, if I saw someone like me on the Supreme Court, it would give me hope that Black women will finally receive the respect we deserve.
This change in our Supreme Court would pave the way for much needed representation and diversity in politics and other important careers where Black women like me are disproportionately underrepresented.
Black women make up about 7.8 percent of the U.S. population, however they account for less than 5 percent of U.S. executive offices, Congress and state legislatures, according to an October 2021 report by Higher Heights Leadership Fund, an organization that invests in and helps increase leadership among Black women.
I often assume that Black women don’t have a place in Congress or any political position because I only see older white men discussing U.S. politics. Although I felt discouraged from wanting to work in positions of power because it made me feel as if I’m not wanted in those positions, I know that seeing a Black woman succeed, would encourage me to do the same.
It’s harder for me to express problems concerning our country, especially when most politicians are white men who don’t understand the struggles, like racial inequality, that Black Americans experience.
Despite the U.S. being a cultural, ethnically and racially diverse country, our government does not reflect its population. Since the assembly of the Supreme Court in 1790, only two out of 113 Justices have been Black men, CNN reported.
If it weren’t for Black women voting in the 2020 Presidential Election, Biden wouldn’t have been elected, as 90 percent of Black women voted for Biden in the election, according to a NBC live Exit Poll.
In addition, more than one-third of Black voters live in battleground states like Georgia, Arizona and Pennsylvania and the number of Black Americans eligible to vote in presidential elections reached a record high in 2020, according to the Pew Research Center.
Black voters made up 11 percent of the national electorate, and 90 percent of Black voters voted for Biden, AP News reported.
I’ve grown tired of watching the Black community put their time and effort into voting for white politicians, only for politicians to give us the shorter end of the stick.
Black women supported Biden, and it’s time for him to do the same. The first step would be officially nominating a Black woman to the Supreme Court.
Representation for Black women allows their voices to be heard, and would help break down racial and gender barriers. With more African Americans in politics, young Black children will be able to see themselves in positions of power.
Seeing a Black person in the spotlight, like how I saw former President Obama, gives Black children endless possibilities for a career they would want to pursue in their future.
If President Biden fulfills his promise by officially nominating a Black woman to the Supreme Court, it would be an historic moment and a reminder for young Black girls and women that anything is possible, despite how hard it may be to get there.