A Historic Win for Charlotte, NC Open's Eyes To Long Lasting Prejudice

A Historic Win for Charlotte, NC Open's Eyes To Long Lasting Prejudice

Vi Lyles wins recent election becoming the city's first African American mayor

Vi Lyles made history in Charlotte on the 7th of November by being elected as the city's first African American mayor. With 59% of the vote, she defeated Republican Kenny Smith who received 41% of votes. This is yet another win for Democrats in Charlotte, where Democrats have won five back to back mayoral races, ending with Pat McCrory.

According to her website, Lyles mother Mary was a teacher and her father Robert owns a construction company. Growing up in Columbia, South Carolina, she thought that by moving to a big city, she wouldn't face the same type of racism and discrimination she did back home. Unfortunately, Charlotte was no different at the time, and this inspired her to work towards creating a better living environment for everyone.

With 30 years of experience in city government and public service in Charlotte, her list of accomplishments include working for underrepresented neighborhoods and increasing investment towards affordable housing. Lyles received her Bachelor of Arts in political science from Queens University and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a Masters of Public Administration.


Lyles' win is a huge step towards a more inclusive and progressive Charlotte. Being the largest city in North Carolina, it is becoming more and more diverse every day. The large population of minorities in Charlotte have not had much representation throughout the years, so seeing a woman of color take on such an important role will have a huge impact in the community. Better representation means better laws for those forgotten, and more importance on issues that other mayors wouldn't have really thought about.

Personally, her win means a lot to me for various reasons. Being a woman and a minority myself, I look up to her because she was able to overcome barriers I familiar with. I am usually the only Hispanic in most of my classes, and truthfully sometimes it is a little intimidating. Also, I am studying political science and I know that it is hard for women to be in politics because we are underestimated, even if we are just as qualified as a man applying for the same job (take the case of Hillary Clinton). Representation really does matter, and when we see someone who looks like us achieve their dreams, it shows us that anything is possible through hard work.

Vi Lyles's win was just one of several historic wins across the country in Tuesday night's elections. In Minneapolis, Andrea Jenkins became the first open transgender person of color to win a seat in the city's council. In Hoboken, New Jersey, Ravinder Bhalla was elected as the city's first Sikh mayor and in Seattle, Jenny Durkan won as the city's first lesbian mayor.


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Yes, We Need Someone LIKE Oprah, But We Don't Need Oprah In 2020

I'm a Democrat who can't believe we're willing to repeat the same past mistakes.

After Oprah's speech at the Golden Globes, people have been talking through various sources of media about the possibility of Oprah running for president in 2020. Her speech was beautiful, direct, and empowering. It was the kind of speech that someone eyeing the presidency would deliver. I love Oprah and I love everything for which she stands. Her story of persistence and success after multiple failures is inspiring and something that everyone can identify with. Yet, I don't want her to run for president in 2020 and here's why.

Plain and simple; she's not qualified. Oprah's education from Tennessee State University was focused on communications. She has been working in the field of communications her entire life. She has made billions off of her shows, network, books, and various other enterprises. One cannot possibly believe that she has the skills and resources to run our country. I hate that I have to make this comparison, but look at Donald Trump. Although he has run a somewhat successful real estate brand (after receiving a small loan of a million dollars from his father), Trump's work as a businessman does not make him qualified to be the president. Yet here we are. Although Oprah and Trump have completely opposite views from one another, I can't imagine that Oprah's lack of experience would be any different from Trump's, save perhaps for Oprah's apparent willingness to learn the ins and outs of the position.

Another reason: Oprah is still a billionaire. We've seen how Trump's policies revolve around whatever will put more money in his pocket. While Oprah has a history of being generous (think: "You get a _____! You get a _____!"), she still maintains a billionaire status. Will she be able to take a step back from her various business endeavors to govern the country? Who will step into her place and take over as the new "Oprah" to run her company?

Please don't misunderstand me. I agree that we need someone like Oprah to be the president, but let's choose someone like Kamala Harris or any other woman that has been fighting hard for women's and minority rights but who also has a history in politics. The solution is not that we need more people that aren't career politicians. We need more career politicians that care about their constituents and the needs of their district, end of story.

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