2021 Inauguration renews hope

William T. Robinson, Jr.

While the nation and the world watched the Presidential Inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, I was overwhelmed with a reassuring hope that we can overcome the differences that divide us as a nation.  I found the inauguration to be a positive shot in the arm, reminding me of how proud I was to be an American. Despite the racial strife, the pandemic, and economic crisis this country is experiencing, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. It reaffirmed my hope that this country is an interwoven network of basically good people striving to coexist in peace. If enough good people manifest their light within, we will attain victory.

I, like so many other Americans, have been a little discouraged or even angry at what I saw as the worst of America in the past four years. Whatever your reasons, a large group of Americans sought a different path in following and supporting a president who defiled the morals and virtues we once held as sacred. By making excuses and acquiescing to this president’s behavior and practices, we have been becoming desensitized by normalizing his detrimental immoral practices.

This inauguration was a sign of and preamble to better times awaiting us—where decency, love, truth, justice, and righteousness will be well received. Now mind you, this will not to be accomplished without hard work and a willingness to work together. But the seeds were sown during the inauguration. If properly nurtured, they will yield a productive and meaningful fruit.

While the inauguration was without a doubt inspiring and beautiful within itself, I gathered a sense that it represented the diversity of all America. I, as an American citizen, felt represented. It moved so many emotions within me. It made me happy, proud, and even brought me to tears of joy at the beauty and love this country can manifest. The inauguration gave the public a visual as to how this country should be—even though, at many times as a country, the darkness and ugliness seems to overshadow the good.

Kudos to all the participants performing in the inauguration. They were phenomenal, from Lady Gaga singing a heartfelt, eye watering version of the ‘Star Spangled Banner’; Jennifer Lopez with her collaboration of ‘This Land is Your Land and ‘America the Beautiful’; to Garth Brooks’ rendition of ‘Amazing Grace.’ And let’s not leave out the youngest Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman, who left us spell bound with her eloquent resonating poem, ‘The Hill We Climb.’

The benediction was one of hope, promise, and healing by Rev. Silvester Beaman, an HBCU graduate of Wilberforce University and presently the pastor of Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Wilmington Delaware. His message was for a blessing of unity and humanity, challenging us as a nation to seek out the wounded and most vulnerable and bind their wounds.

I am not foolish enough to believe that the road ahead will not be difficult. There will be bumps and barriers attempting to block our progress at achieving unity as a nation. Even with a good welcoming speech by President Biden, offering an olive leaf to those who opposed him, there will still be those with an unwillingness to cooperate or seek unity. But I believe the greater mass of people in this country are good, decent, honest, loving, caring people who are willing to put this country ahead of any political party to save our democracy. If we are to succeed in uniting this country, we must identify and call out any detrimental individuals or groups seeking to divide the country, preventing us from reaching our goal of unity. They should be held accountable with impending consequences.  Anything less is a recipe for failure.

It was refreshing to see the resurgence of respect, love, and diversity that has been missing in the preceding four years. I felt a lingering beauty and pride hovering over the inauguration, much as a rainbow can be a sign after a heavy rain. The lack of a dense crowd of well-wishers may have ironically made the event even more significant and sententious.

I, for one, was inspired and encouraged by the 2021 Presidential Inauguration to work harder to do my part as an American in bridging whatever gap necessary to make this a better country—fulfilling the echoed mantra of “liberty and justice for all.” Call me a dreamer, but I feel if we all work hard enough and have faith in God and each other, we can truly overcome any impending obstacles together as a nation.

I know that I am not the only one who felt rejuvenated by the 2021 Presidential Inauguration, showing us what this country ought to be. This is what we can be as a nation.

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