Archive for Thursday, January 22, 2009

Inauguration offers glimmer of optimism

January 22, 2009

The Lawrence Journal-World, in an editorial Tuesday, said:

The weather forecast for Washington, D.C., today was “partly cloudy;” the icon displayed by the Weather Channel was of the sun peeking from behind some clouds.

That seems fitting for the mood of the nation as Barack Obama is inaugurated as the 44th president: The future still is cloudy but a ray of optimism may be shining through.

Hundreds of thousands of people are swarming to Washington because they recognize the historic nature of this event. The inauguration of the first African-American to serve as the U.S. president is a symbol of hope and progress. It may not be the end of racial differences in this country, but it may be the beginning of a process that ends some of the divisions that have hindered American progress.

The landmark nature of his presidency puts high expectations and tremendous pressure on Obama. The many critical issues facing the nation add to that pressure. During his presidential campaign, Obama showed an ability to decipher difficult issues, take good advice and keep his focus on what really mattered. Somewhat alarming, however, is that he dealt more in generalities than specifics concerning how he intended to meet and solve these challenging issues.

Throughout his campaign and since the election, Obama has emphasized the importance of “we.” “We the people” have chosen a new president and we now wish him godspeed as he takes the helm of our precious Union.

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