Harris says she wants to give Americans $2,000 per month until end of pandemic

This week on the 'Dear Culture' podcast, the hosts turn things up a notch with a special episode featuring Senator Kamala Harris

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From the COVID-19 pandemic to the economic crisis that resulted from our nation’s public health crisis, to the fight for Black lives, it’s been a particularly tough time in the US this year. As the election nears, many experts say Black America is focused on two things: protection and possibility.

Black folks, young and old alike, are concerned with making their present and futures more safe, just, and fair than what was relegated to them in the past. Thus, this week on the Dear Culture podcast, the hosts turn things up a notch with a special episode featuring Senator and Democratic Vice Presidential nominee Kamala Harris. Hosted by theGrio’s CEO Byron Allen, Pulitzer Grantee and VP of Content Natasha S. Alford, the episode finds our politically savvy duo asking, “Dear Culture, what can we do to make sure historic change comes this presidential election?”

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“Ban on non-warranted drug cases because Breonna Taylor would be alive today, ban on chokeholds because George Floyd would be alive today,” Harris explains in response to the prompt. 

Alford notes that diversity is more than representation, it’s about bringing equity to light. Although Harris thinks it’s a “shame” that she’s “the only Black woman in the Senate,” she’s very aware that it’s not only about who can get a seat at the table, but what you can do when you’re at the table.

Ninety percent of Black, brown, and femme-owned businesses didn’t receive the PPP benefit distribution during the pandemic, it’s been five years and Flint is still in need of safe drinking water, and Black women, children, and men deserve to live in safety around those who say they’re serving our nation. Harris is not only aware of these issues, but says it’s her “profound responsibility” to “pave paths” that uplift and honor the communities she comes from, as well as holding police accountable with consequence. 

“My mother used to say, ‘Kamala you may be the first to do many things, make sure you are not the last,'” Harris says.

The senator is working to make these demands a reality with the Racial Disparities Act, which requires accountability and consequences for police officers who break the rules and laws. Moreover, she’s teamed up with Senator Cory Booker, the Congressional Black Caucus, and many Democratic politicians to propose the George Floyd Justice and Policing Act, to prevent the premature deaths of Black people by the state. As Harris plots points to equity, Black America watches in hope that real change happens consistently and consecutively.

In addition to police brutality, the country is also struggling with a hunger crisis with 1 in 5 American mothers describing her children under 12 as hungry. Through the course of this pandemic, our nation’s past troubles with food insecurity have become highlighted and pushed to the forefront. 

Allen asks Harris: “What can we do to get some of the stimulus money to apply towards SNAP. So these families don’t have to worry about feeding their children?”

In the next Covid relief bill, Harris wants to expand “SNAP benefits by at least 15%.” Though there’s been heavy opposition to food stamps, Harris and her team will continue to try and push for the food rights of people in hunger. 

Harris wants to give folks $2,000 per month in recurring payments until the pandemic is over to ease concerns of hunger, shelter, bill payments, and so forth. When times are tough, it’s on our elected leaders to find pathways to successfully mitigate and solve national issues.

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That’s why voting matters, nationally, federally, and locally. To ensure folks in each level of power are aligned to pass bills that are just and advocate for basic human rights. Although democracy means everyone has the right to participate in choosing what kind of government they want, oftentimes it hasn’t worked that way.

Yet that doesn’t mean to say that we can’t make it happen. The more politically active and engaged our nation becomes, the more successful and bountiful The People get to be. 

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