The Truths We Hold: An American Journey

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Autobiography, Biography, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States, Women on 2020-08-12 00:29Z by Steven

The Truths We Hold: An American Journey

Penguin Press
2019-01-08
336 Pages
6-1/8 x 9-1/4
Hardcover ISBN: 9780525560715
Paperback ISBN: 9780525560739
eBook ISBN: 9780525560722

Kamala D. Harris

A New York Times bestseller

From one of America’s most inspiring political leaders, a book about the core truths that unite us, and the long struggle to discern what those truths are and how best to act upon them, in her own life and across the life of our country.

Senator Kamala Harris’s commitment to speaking truth is informed by her upbringing. The daughter of immigrants, she was raised in an Oakland, California community that cared deeply about social justice; her parents–an esteemed economist from Jamaica and an admired cancer researcher from India–met as activists in the civil rights movement when they were graduate students at Berkeley. Growing up, Harris herself never hid her passion for justice, and when she became a prosecutor out of law school, a deputy district attorney, she quickly established herself as one of the most innovative change agents in American law enforcement. She progressed rapidly to become the elected District Attorney for San Francisco, and then the chief law enforcement officer of the state of California as a whole. Known for bringing a voice to the voiceless, she took on the big banks during the foreclosure crisis, winning a historic settlement for California’s working families. Her hallmarks were applying a holistic, data-driven approach to many of California’s thorniest issues, always eschewing stale “tough on crime” rhetoric as presenting a series of false choices. Neither “tough” nor “soft” but smart on crime became her mantra. Being smart means learning the truths that can make us better as a community, and supporting those truths with all our might. That has been the pole star that guided Harris to a transformational career as the top law enforcement official in California, and it is guiding her now as a transformational United States Senator, grappling with an array of complex issues that affect her state, our country, and the world, from health care and the new economy to immigration, national security, the opioid crisis, and accelerating inequality.

By reckoning with the big challenges we face together, drawing on the hard-won wisdom and insight from her own career and the work of those who have most inspired her, Kamala Harris offers in The Truths We Hold a master class in problem solving, in crisis management, and leadership in challenging times. Through the arc of her own life, on into the great work of our day, she communicates a vision of shared struggle, shared purpose, and shared values. In a book rich in many home truths, not least is that a relatively small number of people work very hard to convince a great many of us that we have less in common than we actually do, but it falls to us to look past them and get on with the good work of living our common truth. When we do, our shared effort will continue to sustain us and this great nation, now and in the years to come.

PRH Audio · The Truths We Hold by Kamala Harris, read by Kamala Harris
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Biden’s VP pick: Why Kamala Harris embraces her biracial roots

Posted in Articles, Biography, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States, Women on 2020-08-11 21:33Z by Steven

Biden’s VP pick: Why Kamala Harris embraces her biracial roots

BBC News
2020-08-11

Soutik Biswas, India correspondent


Getty Images

US Senator Kamala Harris – chosen by Joe Biden as his Democratic vice-presidential candidate – is known as a prominent black politician. But she has also embraced her Indian roots.

“My name is pronounced “Comma-la”, like the punctuation mark,” Kamala Harris writes in her 2018 autobiography, The Truths We Hold.

The California senator, daughter of an Indian-born mother and Jamaican-born father, then explains the meaning of her Indian name.

“It means ‘lotus flower’, which is a symbol of significance in Indian culture. A lotus grows underwater, its flowers rising above the surface while the roots are planted firmly in the river bottom.”

Early in life, young Kamala and her sister Maya grew up in a house filled with music by black American artists. Her mother would sing along to Aretha Franklin’s early gospel, and her jazz-loving father, who taught economics at Stanford University, would play Thelonius Monk and John Coltrane on the turntable.

Shyamala Gopalan and Donald Harris separated when Ms Harris was five. Raised primarily by her Hindu single mother, a cancer researcher and a civil rights activist, Kamala, Maya and Shyamala were known as “Shyamala and the girls”.

Her mother made sure her two daughters were aware of their background.

“My mother understood very well she was raising two black daughters. She knew that her adopted homeland would see Maya and me as black girls, and she was determined to make sure we would grow into confident black women,” she wrote…

Read the entire article here.

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Joe Biden picks Sen. Kamala Harris to be his vice presidential running mate, making her the first black woman on a major ticket

Posted in Articles, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2020-08-11 21:17Z by Steven

Joe Biden picks Sen. Kamala Harris to be his vice presidential running mate, making her the first black woman on a major ticket

CNBC
2020-08-11

Christina Wilkie, White House Reporter

  • Presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden has chosen California Sen. Kamala Harris to be his running mate.
  • Widely considered at moderate Democrat, Harris will be the first Black woman to join a major party ticket.
  • The announcement caps off a monthslong process that saw nearly a dozen prospective running mates vetted by the Biden campaign.

WASHINGTON – Former Vice President Joe Biden has chosen Sen. Kamala Harris of California to join him on the Democratic ticket, fulfilling his pledge to select a female running mate and making Harris the first Black person ever tapped as the vice presidential nominee of a major party.

His campaign announced the pick Tuesday afternoon through his webpage.

Biden’s selection of Harris, 55, lends racial diversity, gender parity and generational breadth to his campaign. It also represents a strategic decision by the 77-year-old former vice president to keep his ticket firmly within the more moderate wing of the Democratic Party.

“Back when Kamala was Attorney General, she worked closely with Beau,” tweeted Biden, referring to his late son, Beau Biden. “I watched as they took on the big banks, lifted up working people, and protected women and kids from abuse. I was proud then, and I’m proud now to have her as my partner in this campaign.”…

Read the entire article here.

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Joe Biden Just Made History and Picked Kamala Harris as His VP Candidate

Posted in Articles, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States, Women on 2020-08-11 20:38Z by Steven

Joe Biden Just Made History and Picked Kamala Harris as His VP Candidate

Mother Jones
2020-08-11

Jamilah King, Reporter


Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP

Former Vice President Joe Biden has officially selected Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) as his running mate, and in doing so has made history, as Harris will be the first Black woman on a major party’s presidential ticket. Harris was long rumored to be a top choice for the slot, and now she’s tasked with energizing a Democratic electorate that’s torn between a moderate forebearer at the top and an increasingly large proportion of voters who want to see dramatic change during a summer marked by a broad uprising over deep-seated racial injustice and a pandemic that’s killed more than 160,000 Americans.

In Harris, Biden has chosen a Democratic favorite who toiled long and hard in California politics before breaking through on the national stage in the Senate and in running for president last year. She’s also a plainly strategic pick for the moment; Biden clearly thinks that choosing a Black woman—and this Black woman specifically—will help him overcome the lukewarm response he’s gotten from more liberal voters and criminal justice activists who still cite his baggage, like the 1994 crime bill and his praise of segregationist senators. Just this summer, prison abolitionist and academic Angela Davis said she was voting for Biden but admitted, “Biden is very problematic in many ways, not only in terms of his past and the role that he played in pushing toward mass incarceration, but he has indicated that he is opposed to disbanding the police, and this is definitely what we need.” She added later on Democracy Now, “The election will not so much be about who gets to lead the country to a better future, but rather how we can support ourselves and our own ability to continue to organize and place pressure on those in power. And I don’t think there’s a question about which candidate would allow that process to unfold.”…

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Why Kamala Harris’ Afro-Asian Identity Matters | Opinion

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States, Women on 2020-07-17 15:56Z by Steven

Why Kamala Harris’ Afro-Asian Identity Matters | Opinion

Newsweek
2020-07-09

Oneka Labennett, Associate Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity
University of Southern California

Front-runner. Black woman. Afro-Asian? A favorite to become Joe Biden’s running mate, Kamala Harris is in the homestretch of the most consequential veepstakes of our lifetime. With cries for racial justice and police reform gripping the nation, we know Harris’ Blackness matters to a Democratic ticket led by a white male septuagenarian—but so does her Asian identity.

As the daughter of immigrants from India and Jamaica, Harris’ Afro-Asian heritage puts her at the crux of the coronavirus crisis. Just as the pandemic has cast a stark light on the lethality of systemic anti-Black racism in the United States, it has also exposed discrimination and xenophobia against Asian communities and other immigrants. Still, a Black cop and an Asian cop are among the officers charged with aiding and abetting George Floyd’s murder. Speaking to Black and Asian constituencies now would be a powerful acknowledgment that could further galvanize political coalition building while tending to the wounds of division.

Of course, the senator’s Afro-Asian heritage is muted in part because of the American one-drop rule“a drop of Black blood” makes an individual Black. In her book The Truths We Hold, Harris recounts that her mother understood that America would view her daughters as Black, so she raised them as such

Read the entire article here.

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Kamala Harris

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Audio, Interviews, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2020-06-25 15:17Z by Steven

Kamala Harris

Asian Enough
Los Angeles Times
2020-06-23

A conversation with Democratic U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris about the recent rise in anti-Asian hate, how government leaders should address racism in America, and growing up with Indian and Jamaican roots in Northern California.

From the Los Angeles Times, “Asian Enough” is a podcast about being Asian American — the joys, the complications and everything else in between. In each episode, hosts Jen Yamato and Frank Shyong invite celebrity guests to share their personal stories and unpack identity on their own terms. They explore the vast diaspora across cultures, backgrounds and generations, share “Bad Asian Confessions,” and try to expand the ways in which being Asian American is defined. New episodes drop every Tuesday.

Listen to the podcast (00:31:31) here. Download the podcast here.

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Kamala Harris gets personal

Posted in Articles, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2019-09-26 02:00Z by Steven

Kamala Harris gets personal

The Washington Post
2019-09-23

Jennifer Rubin, Opinion Writer


Democratic presidential candidate Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.) stands ahead of her address to an NAACP banquet on Saturday in Charleston, S.C. (Meg Kinnard/AP)

Sen. Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.) has built her career on a model of inclusive, progressive change. She tells voters she became a prosecutor so she could change the system from the inside. However, she has rarely described herself as an insider on behalf of the African American community. But her address at the Charleston, S.C. NAACP Fund Banquet on Saturday shows that’s changing.

At the onset of her campaign, Harris was criticized as not sharing enough of herself. While she has touted her education at Howard University and raised her experience being bused to school as a young girl, her presidential campaign has stressed universality and inclusion. Her “3 a.m. agenda” has stressed that what keeps us up at night — medical bills, housing, our kids’ education — does not depend on whether one is a Republican or Democrat. She routinely states that “we have so much more in common than what separates us.”

That reticence, by necessity, has receded. Voters demand a level of candor and intimacy from their presidential candidates. To both define her message and defend her record, she has had to explain her tenure as a prosecutor and rebutted claims that she was a cog in the machine of mass incarceration. She’s been obliged to share stories of her experience as a prosecutor comforting mothers whose children have been shot and killed and in instituting anti-bias training for police officers.

Read the entire article here.

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When people challenge her blackness, I always say, ‘If she went to Howard, it means she’s one of us.’

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2019-09-19 22:41Z by Steven

“When people challenge her [Kamala Harris’] blackness, I always say, ‘If she went to Howard [University], it means she’s one of us,’ ” says Howard grad and Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Jenice Armstrong. “She comes from there. No one should challenge her blackness.”

Robin Givhan, “Kamala Harris grew up in a mostly white world. Then she went to a black university in a black city.The Washington Post, September 16, 2019. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/09/16/kamala-harris-grew-up-mostly-white-world-then-she-went-black-university-black-city/.

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Kamala Harris grew up in a mostly white world. Then she went to a black university in a black city.

Posted in Articles, Biography, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2019-09-17 17:04Z by Steven

Kamala Harris grew up in a mostly white world. Then she went to a black university in a black city.

The Washington Post
2019-09-16

Robin Givhan, Fashion critic


From left: Karen Gibbs, Kamala Harris and Valerie Pippen at Homecoming in 1986-1987. (Courtesy of Karen Gibbs)

When anyone challenges her racial identity, the presidential candidate points to her four years at Howard University.

Kamala Harris wanted to go to a black school. That’s what black folks called Howard University in the early 1980s when Harris was a teenager considering her future.

Harris, she would say later, was seeking an experience wholly different from what she had long known. She’d attended majority-white schools her entire life — from elementary school in Berkeley, Calif., to high school in Montreal. Her parents’ professional lives and their personal story were bound up in majority-white institutions. Her father, an economist from Jamaica, was teaching at Stanford University. Her mother, a cancer researcher from India, had done her graduate work at the University of California at Berkeley, where the couple had met and fallen in love. And Harris’s younger sister would eventually enroll at Stanford.

Harris wanted to be surrounded by black students, black culture and black traditions at the crown jewel of historically black colleges and universities

Read the entire article here.

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Kamala Harris Has No Problem Being Black, But Why Doesn’t She Say Publicly She’s Part Asian?

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2019-07-23 00:39Z by Steven

Kamala Harris Has No Problem Being Black, But Why Doesn’t She Say Publicly She’s Part Asian?

Diverse: Issues In Higher Education
2019-06-30

Emil Guillermo

Kamala Harris likes to say she’s American. Of course. But she’s not generic. Her racial subtext is this: On her father’s side she’s half-Jamaican, and on her mother’s side she’s half-Asian Indian. Harris should say it proudly and often. Because there’s a lot of misunderstanding out there. Just ask Donald Trump Jr.

He never heard that she was half-Asian (Then again, he thought that meeting in Trump Tower was about Russian adoptions or something).

When it comes to Harris, I like pointing out her Asian side often because wouldn’t that be cool to have the first Asian American president of the United States be half-Black and a woman?

The 2020 Democratic presidential field is nothing but diverse, filled with a demography of riches. There’s men, women, young, old, gay, straight, from North, South, East, West, and Wester (Hawaii), Blacks, Latino and Asians, all of whom yearning for the chance to say they too “Habla Espanol.”

But of them all, I’d say Harris has emerged as diversity’s candidate. She’s what America’s becoming. She’s the face of the American future, mixed race, not just one thing. And definitely she’s not White, though she married one. Diversity!…

Read the entire article here.

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