Amazing Presidential pageantry

Published 12:51 am Wednesday, January 21, 2009

President Barack Hussein Obama has been sworn in to throngs of cheers. It looked more like a rock-star kind of welcome than one for the leader of the free world.

It was a big day. It started very early in the morning when millions of people gathered on the Washington mall to get a chance to see history. Instead of having chants of “U.S.A.,” you heard many chants of “Obama” while the cold crowd awaited the big moment.

Then, all of the Congressional leaders, former Presidents and their families began filing in to their seats on the steps of the Capitol. Thank goodness, the people who gathered on the mall respected the office of president enough not to “boo” President George W. Bush, which was something I was afraid of.

When just about everyone got in their places, the Obamas left in a presidential motorcade from the White House to the Capitol making their way to the steps where Mr. Obama would take the oath office. After taking the oath, President Obama warmly escorted President George W. Bush to the helicopter outside the Capitol.

After that, Mr. President returned to the Capitol to sign the typical acts that every president signs as he comes into office. Following that, the presidential party went down the parade route, walking part of the way back to the White House where they watched the inaugural parade. To finish out the day, they attended inaugural balls.

While everything that occurred yesterday happens every time we have a new President, the atmosphere seemed different. Unlike eight years ago, there were no protests about the elections during the day. Of course, President Bush was coming off one of the most divisive elections in U.S. history, a presidential race that lasted a month after the general election. This time, the margin of victory was much wider.

The weather was much better. Although it was bitterly cold in Washington yesterday, it was better than the rain that fell during President Bush’s inauguration. That rain may have been a foreshadowing of what was to come. I’m not saying he was a bad president, but there were a lot of bad things that happened.

Every time I see patriotic events like this, I am just amazed at the pageantry of the moment. Our country puts on a celebration better than anyone else.

However, the celebration is now over, and it’s time to get to work. Good luck, Mr. President.