For a Better Future
Kevin De Leon is a Democrat who is running for the U.S Senate, but is he really looking out for the people? Well, it is important to look at what he believes in through his past actions, so we can see just how he can change our communities for the better instead of just being all talk.
There are many positive things De Leon has done for the undocumented community and just as much for those who have legal status, not to mention being an active advocate for California’s Latino culture and economy difficulties. He also has been fighting for policies that can help us live through climate change, and he believes in free healthcare.
However, De Leon also pushed the state legislature to approve a plan that would raise the minimum wage to $15 even though raising prices does no one who is living in poverty any good. A higher minimum wage means inflation, which is something only those who are rich can live with.
San Joaquin is a small town with no form of getting anywhere. There aren’t many means of transportation besides school buses and personally owned vehicles. Most of the population in San Joaquin is working for most of the day and are left with nowhere to go besides their job and their house, leaving their children with limited opportunities to have voices outside of the limited opportunities in school.
There is no train in San Joaquin and no bus to go to Fresno or Kerman. There are many people who turn to walking because they have no choice, or they wouldn’t have a job to feed their family and themselves. Not to mention the lack of transportation limits people from trading with other people, whether it be knowledge or items. The less transportation the less likely people in a small community can voice their thoughts and speak to the world about what needs to be said. Those who do have transportation are kept from going far as the gas prices in our community are increasing thanks to inflation.
Although one could easily switch to a bicycle for travel, the temperatures in San Joaquin are not healthy for anyone to bike for long. And there is the bad air quality thanks to the chemicals our community is exposed to and the cars passing recklessly in the streets.
So, what does it mean when De Leon comes to a small community such as San Joaquin? Does this give anyone an incentive to vote for him? Last year, De Leon responded to the legislature’s passage of SB 1 addressing California’s transportation infrastructure saying, “The legislature approved a fiscally responsible plan to address our decrepit transportation infrastructure. This bipartisan compromise includes strict accountability measures and closes our massive transportation funding shortfalls—without burdening future generations with debt.
“These investments will create good-paying jobs, improve traffic safety and expand public transit access in communities across the state.” What this means is that he supports the idea that the government should help us gain forms of transportation instead of raising taxes because in California many of us struggle to pay these taxes.
Voting for De Leon is certainly something people agree on within our community. We need someone who notices how hard-working and deserving a lot of people are in communities such as San Joaquin. The most important thing about leadership is knowing that to be a good leader one must also be a follower. In De Leon’s interview regarding his experience in the Central Valley, he stated, “I am listening more than I am talking.”
Sarah Maravilla is a resident of San Joaquin and a student at Tranquillity High School and West Hills Community College. She has yet to attend her dream college, but she is shooting for the world — something she hopes to gift her parents as they have gifted her a life of her own. Sarah firmly believes in speaking for yourself and everyone you know!