In the end, the American dream is not a sprint, or even a marathon, but a relay. Our families don't always cross the finish line in the span of one generation. But each generation passes on to the next the fruits of their labor. My grandmother never owned a house. She cleaned other people's houses so she could afford to rent her own. But she saw her daughter become the first in her family to graduate from college. And my mother fought hard for civil rights so that instead of a mop, I could hold this microphone.In response, conservative consultant Jon Henke tweeted:
I know an immigrant housekeeper who takes her children with her on her weekend cleaning jobs so that they can see how much better other people have it. She wants to make sure they know that if they work hard, they can live far better than their current lot. Another acquaintance, who cleans offices, does the same—she wants to get her son excited about someday working at a nice desk, as opposed to emptying the trash underneath it.
Jon took Castro's comments as an insult to the janitorial staff, when it was actually the opposite. I can guarantee that there weren't any janitors in that building who wanted their children following in their footsteps. Rather, they work hard so that their kids don't have to do what they do. For those janitors, Julian Castro's story is an inspiration, because it's what they dream will happen with their children.
This should be self-evident. But the fact that it's not confirms why those janitors will be voting Democratic this November. Or put another way: