When I first immigrated to the United States, a part of me remained constantly attached to my native country. I didn’t feel like I belonged here, and I was continually looking for ways to go back and visit my people at least for a few days.
Cuba used to be home, the place where I could kiss and hug everyone without getting disapproving looks, the place where I could speak my native language without offending anybody, and where I didn’t have to be constantly proving myself to other people.
Fast forward a few years, I finally stopped looking back and decided to focus instead on the life I had built here. At that point, I had finished my bachelor’s degree, was part of the American workforce, and my English was almost as good as my Spanish. Cuba wasn’t home anymore; The United States of America was.
This is not just my story, but the story of millions of immigrants who came to this country looking for a better life for them and their families. This is our country now, and we want to be heard, represented, and taken into account by this nation’s leadership.
We need a President who cares about our communities, recognizes our power, understands our values, and gives us a voice. That is exactly what presidential candidate Joe Biden did in a virtual conversation about Latinx values and concerns with artist Jennifer Lopez and former baseball player Alex Rodriguez, both members of the Latinx Community.
In the video, Biden starts by asking about the issues that matter most to them as Latinos, to which JLo responded:
“For me, it’s [about] unifying the nation again, getting rid of this hate. Thinking about my kids walking around in a world where, you know, it’s okay to be racist or prejudiced because our administration says it’s okay — that, to me, it’s really sad because it’s not the country I believe that I grew up in.”
They also talked about how the Latinx community is part of the ones being hit hardest by COVID-19, not only because we are three times more likely to get infected but also because 3 million Latinx people have lost their jobs during the pandemic, and one in three of our small business have gone under since it all started.
Candidate Biden emphasized his support for the $2 trillion bill to help small businesses stay open and take all the necessary precautions to protect their staff and customers from the virus.
In a time where coming together is fundamental to rebuild our country and our economy, Biden’s words reflect a man who stands behind unifying our people no matter their race, class, gender, or political affiliation.
“I’ve been saying this for a long time. I’m going to run as a proud Democrat, but I am not a Democratic President. I am an American President.” Stressed Joe
Similarly, his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, who was also featured on the video, said that if she had the privilege of being the next First Lady, she would make sure that Latinx women have “a seat at the table.”
The conversation’s focus then turned to two values held deeply by the Latinx community, family and faith, and how those values have also guided Biden’s life and public service.
The conversation ended with Alex and Jlo addressing the Latino community in Spanish to encourage them to vote. In JLo’s words, “la comunidad Latina va a determinar lo que va a pasar en esta elección ¡Tú tienes el poder!” In English, the Latinx community will determine what is going to happen in this election. You have the power!
Watch the full video here.