I wonder if this week’s historic inauguration will become one of those moments, where people talk about where they were when (fill in the blank) took place.
I won’t easily forget where I was when I heard Barack Obama give his first address as President of these United States of America. Oh, I didn’t travel to Washington for the occasion. I did, however, trek across town with a coworker to catch an early lunch at Nina’s.
Our timing was impeccable: as we paid our bill, the speech came on television. And Jessica and I stood craning our necks to watch and listen as history was made before our eyes.
It doesn’t matter to me where I was for the occasion, for it was the words themselves that truly mattered most. Passionate, visionary words that resonated with many. Words that outlined the strengths of our nation and laid a foundation of hope for overcoming the challenging times we face. Those words, which I am sure will oft be quoted, were at once strong, sentimental, evocative and inspirational.
I’m not a card-carrying Democrat; in fact my political leanings have always been a bit further right. But even though my vote may not have been cast for the man who now sits at the helm of our great nation, I have no less respect for the man or the position and no less hope for his success.
I sincerely hope that President Obama will breathe new life into our country, because we desperately need it. In his address he spoke of the “sapping” of our nation’s confidence being just as profound as the economic crisis in which we are embroiled. We need a visionary leader to bring hope and change, thus restoring that confidence.
Many are quick to cite the color of our new president’s skin as what made Tuesday’s event historic, but of no less significance to me is that he is the 44th in a line of statesmen who have risen to the challenge of leading our nation and sworn to uphold our Constitution. It is not the color of his skin that will lead us forward, but his strength of purpose and conviction.
The November election may have been a victory for his political party, but President Obama’s success in leading our nation through these challenging times will be a triumph for all Americans. To truly succeed in this mission, he will need the backing of more than just the democrats on capital hill; he will need all of America behind him.
I was moved by President Barack Obama’s inaugural address for many reasons. It called upon us to remember the rich heritage of our nation and use the strength of our forefathers to forge a way ahead. He reminded us that we had been tested as a nation before, and had overcome our adversaries. He showed us the way forward through these difficult times. He gave hope and promised action, both of which our country is in desperate need.
God bless our nation and our new president. May he lead us well.
“Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested, we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back, nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.” – President Barack Obama, 44th President of the United States of America, Inaugural Address, Jan. 21, 2009.