January 20, 2009

Thoughts on the Inauguration

I was lucky enough to be able to watch most of the inauguration ceremony today at work – they set up a full projection screen in the kitchen, but I opted for the privacy of my office, so I could share thoughts with Trevor, and (just maybe) shed some tears in peace.

Here I am with President Barack Obama:

What did you think? Here are just some things that went through my head:
  • Aretha Franklin is amazing, even if she dresses up like a bow.
  • It’s hilarious that Diane Feinstein is considered this evil beacon of liberal-ness – and she’s just this normal-looking woman with Grandma hair.
  • Do you think that Joe Biden and Obama decided what color ties to wear, so that one would be in red and one in blue?
  • He’s only the 6th youngest president?
  • Bill Clinton got WHITE hair.
  • Just two things I appreciate from Obama’s inauguration speech: He mentions non-believers in line with all those of all different religions that make up this country. And he points to the great heroes who make up this land, including the soldiers and the firefighters, and wrapping up with mention of some the greatest heroes: Parents. My favorite tiny quote excerpt: “As the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself." (Complete inauguration address text)
  • That benediction from Reverend Joseph Lowery (co-founder of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference with Martin Luther King Jr.) was amazing: "Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get in back, when brown can stick around, when yellow can be mellow, when the red man can get ahead, man, and when white will embrace what is right...Say Amen!" Amen!
In all seriousness – it has been a long time since I thought about America as a democracy and about the position that we hold, to have had 44 consecutive peaceful transfers of power. It’s something to be proud of. Something else to be proud of: There are qualities that we all as Americans have in common, regardless of political and religious leanings:

"Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends -- hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism -- these things are old. These things are true."

Thanks for the reminder, Mr. President. And so it begins!


Trevor said...

It is fun to see the former presidents, if only to get some perspective on how few people get to know what it is like to take "that most sacred oath."

I think "GHW Bush I, 41" (or whatever the F we are supposed to call that dude) stole the show. Poor guy... he looked terrible, and confused.

alissa said...

of course they talked about the ties. they probably had that nailed down on november 5th.