August 28th was a landmark event in Florida’s history. Andrew Gillum, an anti-establishment candidate who embraced social democratic views, won the Democratic nomination.
Gwen Graham, a Democratic moderate, was the for sure the likely nominee. Yet, because of the overwhelming support from young people, Gillum was able to secure the primary nomination. What does this mean for progressivism in the United States?
Millennials and Generation Z are the future of the political landscape. According to a poll by Gallup, young people view socialism more favorably than capitalism.
Over 50% view socialism favorably in contrast to the 45% that view capitalism favorably. Socialism isn’t the “dirty word” it used to be. Instead, it is now embraced and seen as a likely future.
In a Medium post on March 23rd, 2017, Andrew Gillum declared:
“We don’t have to run this campaign as ‘Republican Life’ to win, and we don’t need to give up on our values to fund this campaign either.”
Andrew believes that health care is a fundamental human right that should be accessible to all. He supports a $15 minimum wage, investments in public education, and an increase of taxes on the rich. He is unapologetic in his beliefs.
Most people are complacent or support the destruction neoliberal capitalism causes. Instead, Andrew wants to fight it and promote compassion and social welfare.
Andrew Gillum isn’t the only progressive candidate receiving a lot of attention. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was able to unseat established politician Joseph Crowley on June 26th, 2018.
As a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, this proved to be a major upset. Her nomination became a major inspiration for others. Other candidates, such as Ilhan Omar have been making waves.
Whether progressives win or lose in elections, the momentum that has been created cannot be destroyed.
Americans are starting to realize the system that we have now does not work.
The progressive movement is accepting of radical views. Political radicals have been making sure their voices are heard.
Even though the Democratic Party is afraid of this radicalism, with Nancy Pelosi saying it is not the future of the Party, it is the future we need. Complacency to the system we have now is reckless and shouldn’t be tolerated.
What we have now is violent. When people are unable to afford insulin and must ration it, that’s a symptom of a much larger problem.
A system that lets people live in poverty or starve, denies people health care and quality education is a system that should be reformed.
That is why progressives are making their voices heard. The people that feel the most alienated from a country that lets this happen is unifying for change. A real change.