Monday, May 23, 2011


President of the United States of America Barack Obama is in Ireland today, currently talking a stroll and having a pint in his 'ancestral home' of Moneygall. So I've finally gotten around to putting up the rest of my photos of Obama's inauguration in Washington D.C. on 20th January 2009.


The inauguration of the first black President of the U.S. was quite an important and powerful moment, and, to me, that first was the significant change that was worth being present to witness in person. Or at least to watch on a giant videoscreen in the freezing cold, standing on the National Mall in D.C. making a solid mass of over a million people stretching from the Lincoln Memorial just behind us past the Washington Monument to the Capitol building distantly ahead, where Obama took the oath of office.




As the candidate of one of the two major political parties in the U.S., I never expected too much else from Obama, and certainly not radical change. I thought it was a positive step for America to have elected him, and it was progress that Obama appealed to hope rather than fear. It was particularly powerful to see the pride in the eyes of thousands of African Americans in the inauguration crowd, some with placards reading 'We Have Overcome'.


Mostly I felt the feeling there was summed up by the pins simply stating 'Yes We Did'. But on a policy level, I didn't think he'd achieve a great deal. I've still been a little disappointed that he didn't do more, or attempt more. With such popularity he had the opportunity to continue the momentum from his election and translate it into some major policy successes, and he hasn't done that as much as even my very limited expectations led me to believe was possible. But he's intelligent and internationalist, he has managed to achieve something on health care in the U.S., he appears to love his wife and she him, and ultimately, let's not forget just how good it is that he's not Bush.

Photos of the Inauguration
Previous post on inauguration day, 20th January 2009


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