Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Obama's Inauguration Speech, Through the Eyes of a 12-Year-Old

My son Eli was given a great homework assignment for today -- watch President Obama's (*) Inauguration speech and write down the line that resonated the most with him. Which had the laudable effect of actually getting him to pay attention to what Mr. Obama was saying and to process what it meant to him.

Naturally, after the speech was over -- we watched it at the Paramount, along with hundreds of other delighted Charlottesvillians (**) -- I asked him which words he had written down. He replied:

All are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness. (***)

Good choice, son. Good choice. (****)


* I cannot tell you how thrilled I am to be able to write the words "President Obama"!

** I often say that one of the things I like most about Charlottesville is how much we value the commons. It was glorious to be in a room packed full of happy people today to watch the Inauguration, so much more gratifying than watching it alone at home. Huge kudos to the Paramount Theater for opening their doors free of charge so that we as a community could experience this wonderful event together.

*** The full quote being, "The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness."

**** Interestingly enough, if volume of applause is any indication, the line that seemed to resonate most with those gathered at the Paramount was this: "To all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more."

No comments: