A Day of Celebration: The Inauguration of President Barak Hussein Obama and the End of the Bush Era

Today is a truly momentous day.  I am a white, straight, middle class man – as little a part of any minority group as a person could be.  Today is a truly momentous day.  It does not, or at least should not matter what your background is be it by birth or by choice of socio-political preference and affiliation.  Today is a truly momentous day.  Today Barak Hussein Obama, son of an African immigrant and a white American mother, who lived as a boy in the predominantly Muslim country of Indonesia, a man who truly represents African Americans, Americans of European decent, Americans of mixed heritage.  He is a man who represents both the majority and the minority of this nation through the very blood that runs through his veins (sorry women, I suppose you are still left out in this physiological sense).  It is a historical moment.  President Obama is not only the first black President of the U.S., a nation that actively endorsed and engaged in forcing the African people into slavery as recently as only a few generations ago, he is also the first minority president in the history of any western industrialized nation.  That makes this a momentous day not only for Americans, but literally for people all over the world.56543130

Do not misunderstand.  I have many reservations about President Obama.  There are a number of issues on which I sit nervously at the edge of my seat, unsure of whether or not I will end up approving of and supporting his decisions and actions.  I did not vote for President Obama (in fact I have never voted for a Democrat or Republican presidential candidate).  Yet this is still a momentous day and regardless of whether I approve or disapprove of Obama as his term as President unfolds into the future, today is a day of celebration.  It does not matter that I did not vote for him, that I was not a supporter who helped elect him to office.  It does not even matter what my opinion of him is tomorrow.   It is still a day of celebration.  I could not help but feel a sense of pride, joy, hope as I watched him fumble through the oath of office and give a somber, but inspirational inaugural speech. 

This is not a perfect country.  We still have much to learn.  We have a tremendous amount of progress that still needs to be made.  Today, however, we showed ourselves as a nation as well as the world at large that we do have the capacity to grow, to change, to progress, to overcome the faults and mistakes of a dark past and move forward into a somewhat brighter and more inclusive future.  Today is truly a tremendous day, a day of celebration, joy, and hope for a better tomorrow.

bush_moron1At the same time it is a day of celebration for another reason entirely and yet related.  Today was the end of the Bush presidency.  Today was hopefully the end of an era of Bush presidents, both of whom have helped drive the world into war and economic peril over the past two decades.  I am almost 30 years old.  If you include the eight years that George H. W. Bush was Vice President under Ronald Regan I have lived 66.6% of my life under the rule of the Bush family (and I won’t even begin to try and wonder of the unlikely yet mystically possible implications of the above number in relation to the current thought process).  And so, after 20 of my 30 years of life having little choice but to live under the leadership of this inept family dynasty, today we celebrate the end. 

When Bush Jr. was introduced at today’s inauguration and millions of people booed.  I felt happy.  When he and his wife left in the marine helicopter and millions of people sang, “Na na na na, hey hey hey, good-bye!”  I was proud of this nation.  I know it was rude, but he deserves it and I sincerely hope it makes him seriously ponder his last eight years and the nothing but disastrous effect he has had on this nation and the rest of the world.  A leadership based on fear and divisiveness, warlords and corporate interests, secrecy and lies has finally come to an end.  It is truly a day of celebration.  America and its people can once again hold their heads high.  We can once again say, “I am an American” without feeling a sense of utter shame and humiliation. 

Today we can celebrate.  Bush is gone.  We can, perhaps, have pride in our government again.  As President Obama said so passionately in his inaugural speech, “Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ouselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.”  And so today we celebrate.  Tomorrow President Obama goes to work, the nation goes to work as we try and rebuild our reputation, our place in the world, our economy, and our way of life in the wake of the catastrophic event that has been the George W. Bush presidency and the Bush era in general.  I truly cannot express my jubilation.  Thank goodness he is fainlly gone! 


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