I don’t have to tell you how much is at stake for us all in this election.
We in the LGBTQ community are well positioned to lead the way in this fight. We have learned to fight for our rights. We have learned to fight like hell and organize. We have learned to lead. We have learned to care for one another. We built organizations to fight for us. And we will fight to elect Joe Biden.
Joe Biden has been consistent. From day one of this race, he has insisted that this election is a crucial turning point in our nation’s history.
COVID-19 ought to be the common enemy against which an intelligent president would have alerted and calmed the public, mobilized every scientific and medical resource, and established a safety net to prevent massive unemployment and food shortages. Instead, we have unambiguous evidence that Donald Trump lied to the American public consistently, deliberately, and with malice aforethought.
Instead of sounding the alarm, Trump tried to lull everybody to protect Wall Street and to spread bizarre, anti-scientific “cures.”
He allowed the pandemic to become the number one issue in our nation and certainly one of the biggest challenges we have ever faced in Chicago.
If that wasn’t bad enough, Trump has also attempted to use the pandemic to build his base and drum up far-right conspiracy theories. For us, this attempt to gin up a mass right-wing movement and to encourage and incite violence is particularly dangerous.
For LGBTQ folk of color, all the more so.
Our civil rights, liberties, and personal safety are at risk. It’s not our imagination. It is very likely at this point that another seat on the Supreme Court will be filled with another justice hostile to the rights of women, people of color, and the LGBTQ community. It is chilling.
We cannot afford to allow them to roll back the wheel of history. Hiring discrimination, housing, adoption — it’s all on the table. We must fight to protect what we’ve already won, and defend future generations.
We know where Joe and Kamala stand. There’s no equivocation. Joe Biden has also demonstrated his capacity to grow and evolve politically and socially. He has empathy. He will lead with dignity.
We know what a Joe Biden presidency will mean. Recovery, a new set of programs designed to put folks to work, provide immediate income relief, amp up at-home learning, and fund medical research that will make us once again the leader in developing the tools that will beat this virus and future pandemics. And no more running away from common-sense gun safety reform.
We need massive voter turnout this election season under very difficult circumstances. But we, of all people, have been accustomed to doing hard things and winning hard fights. We’re on a mission to save our country and the world. Let’s win this.
Lori Lightfoot is mayor of Chicago.