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Entries in Inaugural 2013 (3)


EA Video Analysis: A Gut Reaction to President Obama's 2nd Inaugural Address

"I have a confession to make. I'm still on a bit of roller-coaster after hearing those words in Washington, DC..

You see, there's the highs of when he talked about Seneca Falls, Selma, and Stonewall --- and, I thought, "Yes, absolutely. References to the fights for equality, the fighte for justice by women and by African-Americans, the fight for gay rights.

But before that, I spent the first several minutes on a low. And after that passage, I fell into a valley of anti-climax.

Because Obama started with what makes "us" different, what makes "us" American, what makes "us" special?

And I thought, "That's all well and good if you're one of the 'us' who is American. But what about the 'us' in the rest of the world?".


US Video and Transcript: President Obama's Second Inaugural Address

Each time we gather to inaugurate a president, we bear witness to the enduring strength of our Constitution. We affirm the promise of our democracy. We recall that what binds this nation together is not the colors of our skin or the tenets of our faith or the origins of our names. What makes us exceptional – what makes us American – is our allegiance to an idea, articulated in a declaration made more than two centuries ago.

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US Politics Audio: Any Hope and Change in Obama's 2nd Term? --- Scott Lucas with the BBC

On the eve of the Inauguration, I joined Sir Christopher Meyer, the former British Ambassador to the US, on BBC Radio 5 Live's Double Take to discuss the achievements of President Obama's first term and the prospects for his second.

Listen to programme from  14:38

I found this a useful summary, with emphasis on Obama's "cautious" and "pragamatic" approach. In addition Sir Christopher's upbeat assessment of Obama on domestic issues and my less-enthusiastic comments over gun control and foreign policy, the former diplomat pointed to advances on the social front such as immigration.

If the discussion had continued, I would have heartily endorsed this shift in tone on some social issues. adding positive signs --- often at State level --- such as acceptance of same-sex relationships and sensible policies towards marijuana use.

The BBC summary starts at the 14:38 mark, with the discussion following from 17:17.