Saturday, January 24, 2009

Change We Can Believe In (Day Six)

So I'm watching Obama's inauguration, and I'm thinking that the U.S is not really a secular state. I mean, Obama went to church before the inauguration. Pastor Rick Warren made a speech/prayer. Biden and Obama put their hand on the Bible while taking the oath. Everyone was all "God bless America". Do you think an athiest could be elected president? I don't. What about non Christian? Something to think about.

I had to fast forward through about three hours of paper flag waving frozen citizens to finally get to the actual ceremony and gosh golly darndit it was exciting! There were a zillion official looking people and Hill and Bill Clinton and people dressed in security outfits and the navy and a band and paparazzi and other important folks! Fun fact: Obama didn't really have to take the oath. The 20th Amendment states that his presidency begins on January 20th at noon no matter what. Inaugurations take a long time, or at least this one does. I wasn't really paying attention when Bush was inaugurated. When was that? The first time was 2000, I was 10, obvs I didn't really care. Obama is so handsome.

Also, LOL re: Aretha Franklin's hat.

Obama stumbling over the oath was kind of cute, but also like, you think he would have practiced in front of a mirror or something. His speech was moving, per ush, but it didn't move me to tears like I hoped it would.
[Edit: I'd like to make note that it wasn't Obama who screwed up the oath, obvs Obama would never screw up something like that, it was the Chief of Justice who didn't practice in front of a mirror.]

I see why everyone was critical of Elizabeth Alexander's poem. She. Read. It. Like. This. It. Didn't. Really. Seem. Like. A. Poem.

However, Reverend Joseph Lowery got one thing right:
"We ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get back, when brown can stick around, when yellow will be mellow, when the red man can get ahead, man, and when white will embrace what is right."
Obama is a symbol of hope, American or not. Wherever you are he represents change, and the hope that we are able to move forward to something better.


Supporting links:
God's Role in Presidential Inaugurations "Neither the phrase "so help me God" nor the use of a Bible are officially required in the presidential oath..."
Obama's speech part 1
Obama's speech part 2
Reverend Lowery's speech
Aretha Franklin's hat has turned out to be very popular indeed. People have even made a flickr page.
Mr.Prez and First Lady's first dance! Beautiful.

Fun Fact: Obama is left handed.

"Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted — for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things — some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom."
- Barack Obama, Inaugural Address, January 20 '09.

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