By Bryan Paz
Are you angry about the fact that racist and dangerous presidential candidate Donald Trump promises to build a wall to keep immigrants out? Do you celebrate when the Affordable Care Act delivered in ensuring more Latinos have healthcare? Are you passionate about politics and its impact on the Latino community? You should run for
public office. This country needs you.
Every time politicians advocate for policies that are damaging to our community, many of us get rightfully riled up. But then what? Just complain on the Facebook comments section? We need to do much more than that. How about more of us actually run for office and replace politicians who don’t represent our interests or us?
If you look at the local, state, and federal level, Latinos are extremely underrepresented in our county and town governments, state legislatures, governor’s mansions, and Congress.
Whether it is educational equity, immigration policy, criminal justice reform, or environmental justice, we need good people in office to get rid of harmful policies and pass policies that will make our lives fairer and open opportunities to help us live the American Dream.
If you have an ounce of passion in your heart about justice and equality for our community, consider running for office. Latinos across the country need you. America needs you. Whether it be superintendent of public schools, county commissioner, city mayor, state representative or senator, or a member of Congress, your unique life experiences, your severely unrepresented background, and passion for progress is sorely needed in our policy decision-making process.
You don’t think you’re up for it? I can tell you right now that you’re already qualified. You know what our community goes through. You know how hard it can be sometimes. That right there is what is needed in people who run our country. A first-hand understanding of how political inaction and damaging public policy makes life more
unfair and unequal for many Latinos, African-Americans, and other marginalized communities.
And in terms of the logistics (having a team, fundraising, having a communications team, etc.), it is challenging. That’s indisputable. However, change is hard. But it is arguably the best fight to take up and best reason to lose sleep. Helping your fellow country folk have a better life and making it better for future generations is worth the hours and effort put into running for office and advocating once elected.
Earlier this week, Bernie Sanders urged people who believed in his campaign’s political revolution to engage in policy-making at the local level and statewide. I agree passionately. Instead of waiting for others to change our politics for us, we must run for office. Like Alice Walker said, we are the ones we have been waiting for.
His website created a website for folks who are interested in running for office. Please sign up here.
So next time out of touch, corporate sponsored politicians pass another bill that makes it harder for our community to live in America, don’t just complain. Actively work to ensure it doesn’t happen again and work to improve our condition and the conditions of others by running for office in your community, county, or federal district. Justice and equality is asking you to.