AAHOA CHAIRMAN (2020-2021)
This November, millions of Indian Americans will celebrate Diwali, the Hindu festival commemorating the victory of light over darkness and knowledge over ignorance. Prior to this revered holiday, many more Americans also will cast ballots in the 2020 election. Diwali is a time to reflect upon and hope for continued success and prosperity. And while fragmented and partisan, this year’s elections present an opportunity to engage in the pursuit for the common good of our families, communities, and nation as a whole. Before Diwali is celebrated with prayer and festivities, it is critical to vote. Selecting our politicians is a pillar of civic participation for eligible citizens of a democratic nation.
Diwali marks a time to reflect upon the ways in which one can uplift others and shine light into the world, even amidst the trying circumstances of this pandemic. It is a time to celebrate and appreciate the past and prepare for what is to come. And the choices we make in the polls will impact the direction of our nation and our industry for the years ahead. Voting in this election carries profound significance.
From city councils and state legislatures to the U.S. Congress, the politicians we elect will make decisions affecting our businesses and communities. AAHOA has built out a reputable presence in state and federal government affairs over the years. Yet, our status as the voice of America’s hoteliers is only as strong as the engagement of our AAHOA Members. We certainly have the economic standing and enjoy the political relationships to influence sound public policy, but this does not fulfill the civic duties of our members nationwide – we also must vote.
No candidate is perfect, and no one vote guarantees the election’s outcomes. Not voting, however, should not be an option. Inaction in this process negates the right to democratic participation, which our constitution protects. An election is a time when a nation charts its future. In the spirit of Diwali, out of gratitude for and in the hope of continued success and prosperity, I implore you to get out and vote.