Democrats say President Obama’s inaugural address Monday was great. Republicans viewed it a bit differently — not that great. It’s that party thing that creates biases and influences opinions.
The view here is that it wasn’t history shattering but it was an attempt to inspire Americans to do better by taking a few tips from their earlier relatives, who overcame many hardships to preserve our republic. Of note is that he used a few words over and over again in a call for unity. He used “together” often. He began many sentences with “we the people.” The problem is the president calls for action and unity but he is as responsible as the Republicans and Congress for the stalemate on major legislation. Leadership embodies a certain amount of compromise and cooperation.
As in his campaign, he referred to the poor who need government help and to the status of the middle class. “We the people, still believe that every citizen deserves a basic measure of security and dignity . . . still believe that our obligations as Americans are not just to ourselves, but to all posterity . . . still believe that enduring and lasting peace do not require perpetual war.”
He talked about freedoms, duties, obligations of all Americans and values. There was nothing really new in his address other than being more pointed in favor of gay rights. There were no new and lasting phrases. What he said had been said before in so many words. He did mention God a number of times in his speech. All Americans should agree with this: “With common effort and common purpose, with passion and dedication, let us answer the call of history, and carry into an uncertain future that precious light of freedom.”
We don’t believe the president is as self-confident in changing the country as he was four years ago. Four years in the White House is an experience that tells you there are many barriers to seeking change. It’s the nature of the federal government and politics. Let us also not forget the many elected and appointed personalities that have to be dealt with every day. It’s that Washington, D.C., environment that is the roadblock to change.