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Byron Shire
May 7, 2021

Biden Inauguration: speech, song and poetry herald new era for America

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‘The dream of justice for all will be deferred no longer.’

After four years of turmoil, Joe Biden offered hope and calm to the American people in his first speech as President.

Source: ABC.

Biden was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States of America on Thursday morning Australian time, while Kamala Harris made history as the first woman and person of colour to hold the office of Vice President.

Calls to respect democracy

The inauguration ceremony was shaped by two themes.

Firstly, mindful that the terrace on which he stood had only last week been the site of bloodshed and terror at the hands of a white supremacist insurrection, President Biden emphasised unity and respect for American institutions.

‘Democracy has prevailed,’ said Biden in his inaugural speech.

‘Here we stand, just days after a riotous mob thought they could use violence to silence the will of the people, to stop the work of our democracy, and to drive us from this sacred ground. That did not happen. It will never happen. Not today. Not tomorrow. Not ever.’

Diversity and social justice

President Biden’s second priority evident at the inauguration was a willingness to address social justice issues, informed by Biden’s Catholic faith, which were ignored and left to fester by President Trump.

In his speech, President Biden recommitted himself to action on climate change, racial justice, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, while the President’s words were a long-awaited dose of sanity, it was his actions which spoke louder about his willingness to bring on change.

At 21 minutes, Biden’s inaugural address was unusually short. He then gave others the spotlight, handing over the platform to a wide range of representatives of modern America, particularly young people and people of colour.

In the end it was Amanda Gorman, a 22-year-old black poet from California, who envisioned a brighter future for America with a power and creativity that Biden’s oratory did not.

Gorman, the youngest inaugural poet in history, delivered a spine-tingling performance of her poem The Hill We Climb.

‘We will not march back to what was, but move to what shall be: a country that is bruised, but whole, benevolent, but bold, fierce, and free,’ recited Gorman, whose poem also quoted Scripture.

‘The new dawn blooms as we free it. For there is always light. If only we’re brave enough to see it. If only we’re brave enough to be it.’

Other highlights of the joyful and diverse inauguration ceremony were Lady Gaga’s rendition of the national anthem, Jennifer Lopez’s performance of ‘This Land Is Your Land’, and finally, a benediction and blessing from Biden’s long-time friend Rev Dr Silvester Beaman.


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17 COMMENTS

  1. Cometh the hour, cometh the Joe and the Kamala to rescue The U.S. of the A. The highlight for me was seeing the Joe in the Big Chair signing away at that pile of Presidential folders on his desk and he got the priority pretty much spot on – 1. Covid related measures; 2. Social related measures; 3. Paris Agreement rejoining. The last 4 years of lies finally ended now for fresh beginnings.

  2. The Trump hit/hate pieces have been rolling thick and fast off the Echo press in recent weeks but none of them have congratulated Biden on what an extraordinary job he did in securing, allegedly, 85M votes, a record apparently and what is really extraordinary is given that there is only 212M registered US voters, of which 66% turned out, so 140M voted, if Trump got 75M that would leave 65M for Biden would it not? So how or should I say when did Biden get the extra 20M votes to make 85M, was it the vote dumps (all for Biden)at 4:30am in the swing states or was it the programming in the dodgy Dominion voting machines which allotted Trump .66 of a vote and Biden 1.33 of a vote , was it all the dead who voted or was the people who turned up to vote and found that someone had already voted for them?
    Whatever one may think of Trump this has to be the dodgiest US election ever, the US judiciary, for whatever reason, has abdicated its duty, making petty procedural excuses to not examine the substance of the actual fraud that has taken place. It seems US voters voted only so Biden could find out how many more votes he needed to manufacture in order to win. This is not democracy, there has not been an inauguration, only the instalment of a crook.

    • Anton my man, take all your ‘evidence’ of electoral fraud to The US Supreme Court. I’m sure you’ll succeed where Trumpet and Rudy failed, yeah.

  3. OMG Anton in EVERY instance of Trumps delusion re electoral fraud ,THERE WERE INVESTIGATIONS, thick & fast and NONE of them delivered ANY substance .ALL of the Trump accusations of fraud found NO evidence by any judge or judiciary , so his claims (initiated by his giant ego & unwillingness to accept defeat) were declared null & void. But I guess you won’t accept that wealth of evidence , or lack of it either ? Interesting were votes were close & Trump had won he didn’t contests those numbers? Oh ! yeah and Trumps famous last words re Draining the Swamp (remember that insincere diatribe) well he did drain it at 1 .am on the last day of office, pardoning so many crooks within his own Govt (and some violent individuals beyond). I guess that’s what he REALLY meant in that original statement. He was only ever interested in protecting those crooks within the confines of his own dirty swamp.I’m looking forward to not ever seeing his face ever again.

    • Come on Lindy , so goes the mainstream fake news narrative, the numbers just don’t add up, the so called investigations were a farce, they did not find anything because they did not look , for someone who is allegedly the most popular president ever, getting 85m votes why then did only a couple of hundred people turn up to his fake inauguration, the National Mall was completely empty, what a joke! btw I hear Biden is already being impeached over Ukraine.

  4. To paraphase Chomsky, there’s only one party in America with two factions. He called it the Business party, you could even say the Establishment party run by US corporate, military and media elites. The factions are the Democrats and Republicans. Trump was a possible and imperfect agent of change. Sanders was another. Both are now sidelined and it’s back to business as usual for the Establishment party. So don’t expect anything like universal healthcare from this administration just more virtue pandering with superficial diversity statements.

  5. Anton did you know the only proven cases of fraud were for the Donald andthey amounted to 2 votes. If you check the New York Post( a conservative newspaper) it analyses all the court cases and the common theme- hearsay is not evidence and is reason they were thrown out. But then to quote a US congressman- facts maybe lost on you.

  6. Spot on James R-G, Chomsky is da man. What gets me is the one sided media coverage here in OZ, almost always portraying Trump as a total imbecile, which may be true, but millions of people think of him as a virtual savior, including many in Australia. So where is their voice, if Australia and America are democracies, then surely 70 million people’s opinion deserves some media coverage in an election.

  7. Anton, well…that’s a piece of apple-pie you’ve swallowed. Not democracy. I’d guess
    if the Trump tide & math turned the ‘swamp’ the way you see it then that’s freedom of
    speech for a tally that wasn’t one. You missed by a mile. James – Morrison & Co are
    our elites & fortunately we ‘missed your Angel [agent] for change here.’ If you really
    want to see crazy you could invite Trump down under – he gets on well with ScoMo.
    The PM’s already told us they are of like mind.

  8. Chomsky aint the man… he’s an over-blown bedbug & does not speak for anyone
    with a brain that works, Mark. Millions were covered by the New York Post’s fact
    -finding & Donald-ducking-Trump got left out in the cold where he belongs. Next
    up you will be telling me that our red-headed Hanson would have won the last Fed.
    election had it not been for her stolen votes.

  9. Anton – go & check the format of voting once you [ie. us] become a Republic. It’s utterly
    confusing & nothing like we have here. Preferences we know in OZ would maybe give the
    greens a boot[in or out] is sorta what happens over there. Get it? Then you’ve got the states
    that could be toted – just depends on the order of the day. That explains why I do-not-want
    a ‘republic’ here. We would [some of us] not choose to vote in one election & do in the next.
    Where have all the flowers gone/long-time passing…

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