On a suburban hill in Duluth Heights, I exchange ideas with two Muslim UMD students/co-workers who relocated from Brooklyn Center. I swap my Liberian blended family stories with their upbringing in the Twin Cities. Fatima's mom has worked 18 years in a factory. Her father is a full time worker also, raising 4 kids. Both of my co workers tell me they are given the finger regularly in Duluth while driving or in a store. They are hated for their religion and dress.
I am voting this year as a messenger of tolerance. It is not because I have a half African son or I have friends from every race. I am voting out of choice, not fear. I am voting to demonstrate that I share values of welcoming the stranger which the MNCatholic.org says should be exalted during voting season. I am voting, not because I hate the other side, but because I can redeem their attitudes and displacement they feel by being part of tradition. I am the party of yes among the contrary nos. I vote because I can. Inside me is a feeling of destiny translated to protecting the poor.