(Oct. 4, 2019) A voice for the marginalized is the theme for Democratic Congressional candidate Mia Mason’s run to represent Maryland’s First Congressional District in 2020.
“I found myself ... involved in politics when I was losing my civil rights, and then when other people started losing the same ones,” Mason said. “As a person from the LGBT community, we had to fight to serve [in the military], so I helped other friends do that and then I became an advocate to make sure that it wouldn’t happen to others.”
Mason served the United States Navy, Army and District of Columbia Coast Guard for 20 years.
She served on board USS Kitty-Hawk CV-63 for Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom for three tours of duty.
She also served on board USS Bataan LHD-5 to help communities devastated by Hurricane Katrina.
She won the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Award, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Arrowhead Device and Humanitarian Medal among other awards for her work.
Despite Mason’s successful military career, as a transgender woman, she faced discrimination, particularly under the Trump administration, which imposed a ban on transgender people in the military.
“Under this administration ... he [Trump] went after immigrants ... people of color ... women, and then [he] came after me while I was still serving in the military.
“I had so many various jobs, and then as I transitioned, that became a turning point for me, because, when the policies were announced, I basically became an unknown person,” Mason said.
“I tried to become known, but because my story was so different ... I am only enlisted by going through some of the hardest and roughest parts of our military, just to be able to serve in our military.”
She said this inspired her to enter the political world so that she could prevent other people like her from going through the same obstacles.
“Our biggest motivation for [running] was seeing what was happening with the current representative,” Mason said. “How he was voting against the environment, how he was voting against certain policies for women for abortion, and affecting our health care services for women in general.”
In addition to civil rights, Mason said other important issues included Medicaid for all and improving Maryland’s education system.
Mason is aware of the challenges ahead of her as a Democrat running in a traditionally Republican district.
Nonetheless, she said regardless of party affiliation, her campaign would ensure that both sides are heard.
“You [constituents] can ask more questions,” she said. “That’s going to be the best thing for us to get to know the community a lot more. Everybody... has a story.”
For more information on Mia Mason, go to https://miadmason.us/ or call 410-94-MASON