Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Inauguration Day - 2021


The day has arrived. It dawns full of hope and promise like all Inauguration Days before it. A chapter of American history ends and another begins with the utterance of a short, but powerful, phrase. 

The oath is perhaps the most powerful in the land and possibly the world.

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

At noon today, Joe Biden becomes the 46th President of the United States. 

No one wants a president to fail. No matter who we voted for, there is nothing worse than a failed presidency and so at noon all of the hopes and dreams of every American fall upon his shoulders and those of the Vice President, Kamala Harris.

  • The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants. He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the nation as a whole. Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly as necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile. To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or any one else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else.
    • Theodore Roosevelt, "Lincoln and Free Speech", The Great Adventure (1926; vol. 19 of The Works of Theodore Roosevelt, national ed.), chapter 7, p. 289.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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