January 20 is etched in the history of the United States as a new era of responsibility. A new president is sworn-in and the day is looked forward to as a new beginning. Barack Hussein Obama, the 44th President of United States, has not just many promises for the world but many firsts to his credit too.
He is not only the first African-American President but also the first US president to swear on the burgundy velvet Bible that Abraham Lincoln used during his 1861 inauguration.
According to a news report, Obama is said to have been “deeply honoured” to have the first use of the Lincoln Bible since the Civil War to “provide a powerful connection to our common past and common heritage”.
“Obama has drawn inspiration from Lincoln, who faced the toughest challenge as a president with a nation divided by Civil War.”
His “extraordinary inspiration” is visible in the selection of his team too. He has inducted a number of political rivals, including Hillary Clinton, into his cabinet, which is a strategy reminiscent of the “team of rivals” approach of Lincoln.
That’s not all, a self-professed follower of Abraham Lincoln, Obama also went on to have on his lunch menu the food eaten by Lincoln after his inauguration. And thus based on the tastes of Lincoln, seafood stew, pheasant and duck with chutney, and apple cinnamon sponge cake made way to the table.
The president in his swearing-in ceremony warned the nation of the tough times while pledging hard work. “Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America – they will be met.
“On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.”
In a divided world, where fear, scare and insecurity have taken a toll, Obama is a ray of hope. Wish peace and faith spread beyond the inaugural speech…