Christmas is finally here, and although it feels a little different amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, people all over the country are working hard to make the seasonal celebrations cheerful. After a wild year, it's admittedly nice to settle down and spend the holidays alongside loved ones, either virtually or in-person. This year, President-elect Joe Biden’s 2020 Christmas tweet encouraged Americans to put safety first for this year’s festivities, and his message is so heartwarming.
On Dec. 24, Biden stated via Twitter that this Christmas, Americans should continue to follow precautionary health measures and persevere through difficult times. "I know how hard it is to forego holiday traditions — but it is so very important," he wrote. "Please wear masks, limit the size of any groups, and refrain from traveling. We have to stay apart just a little longer," he added.
On Dec. 25, Christmas morning, he tweeted a video featuring him alongside future FLOTUS Jill Biden. "We know for so many of you in our nation, this has been a very difficult year," he stated in his address to the country. "As many of our fellow Americans are struggling to find work, put food on the table, and pay their rent or their mortgage, we're reminded we're put on this earth to care for one another," he added. He and Jill thanked essential workers, health care professionals, service members, and scientists and researchers for their work during this difficult and unpredictable year. "Our family knows your sacrifice, and out hearts are with you," Jill stated.
Biden's Christmas announcement arrives during one of the country's most turbulent holiday seasons yet — even Biden himself admitted his family would be scaling down celebrations. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of working-class Americans are worried about rent, food, work, health care, and more. As of Dec. 25, nearly 330,000 people have died of COVID-19 in the U.S., and over 18.7 million cases have been reported across the country, per the New York Times. Additionally, over 8 million Americans have fallen below the federal poverty line, and food banks all over the nation are preparing for a deficit of 6 to 8 billion meals within the next year.
As a new COVID-19 relief package remains deadlocked between Congress and President Donald Trump's approval, Biden continues to urge both parties to negotiate a deal that would allow Americans to continue persevering through the global pandemic. "Our darkest days in the battle against COVID are ahead of us, not behind us," Biden stated during a Dec. 22 address to the public. "We need to work in a bipartisan way. That’s the only way we’re going to get through this, in tough times," he added.
Biden also emphasized how, since many of the benefits in the new relief bill would expire between March and April, 2021, this bill would only be a down-payment to signal a more comprehensive relief bill once he's inaugurated on Jan. 20. "This bill is just a first step," he said. "There's a lot more work to do. Early next year, I’m going to put forward to the Congress my plans for what comes next," he continued.
As the world moves into 2021, here's hoping next year's holiday season includes a little more festivity and a little less freaking out.