Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration Day!

After what's felt like years since the election, inauguration day is finally here. It seems like every media outlet in the world is covering the day, but CNN's streaming coverage is here, or FoxNews' coverage is here if you roll in that direction (or you can go with C-SPAN if you prefer less bloviating.)

I don't have much to add to the avalanche of words being both written and spoken about this day, except this: expectations for Obama are so high that he cannot help but to disappoint many of his most enthusiastic supporters at some point (see this for an example), and no doubt there are many issues of the greatest weight, such as the possibility criminal prosecutions of Bush administration officials, where Obama may disappoint a great, great many of us. But it cannot be overstated, the degree of dramatic change that is being brought to our nation by the swearing in of Barack Obama. To me this is exemplified to the greatest degree by news that Obama intends to issue orders to begin shutting down the detention camps at Guantanamo Bay as early as his first day of office. Nothing is more symbolic of the Bush administration's bankrupt approach to terrorism and its wanton trampling of human liberty than the travesty that is Guantanamo Bay, and nothing could indicate a cleaner break from those policies than an order on day one to begin shutting it down. This is the kind of thing that all of us worked, hoped, prayed and voted for on November 2nd, and we should all be justifiably proud of both Obama and ourselves for having the wisdom to elect him to office. Now make no mistake; if Obama fails to live up to our expectations, it is our right and obligation as citizens to criticize him and pressure his administration to do what we believe to be right. But that doesn't change the fact that whatever else, things will be very different from here on out, and we have every right to approach this change with optimism and hope.

Anyway, enjoy this historic day. Later this afternoon, we'll have a new President and a new start.

UPDATE: And Barack Obama is now our President

UPDATE II: What a great speech. One of his best.

UPDATE III: Enjoy the new and improved White House website.

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