4:15: I’m transfixed! I’m watching every second. I love Michelle Obama’s coat and the belt, but my favorite touch is the purple gloves. Now I must have purple gloves. The next surprise will be her gown tonight. Apparently she commissioned 12 designers and she will pick one, but she hasn’t told anyone (outside her family presumably) which one she’ll wear. Can’t wait!!
I’ll be back later, during the parade, to talk about Michelle’s outfits and other things, but for now, my favorite parts of Barack Obama’s speech. There are so many I should probably just post the whole thing, but here are the standouts for me.
“For history tells us that while these truths may be self-evident, they’ve never been self-executing; that while freedom is a gift from God, it must be secured by His people here on Earth. The patriots of 1776 did not fight to replace the tyranny of a king with the privileges of a few or the rule of a mob …”
“Through blood drawn by lash and blood drawn by sword, we learned that no union founded on the principles of liberty and equality could survive half-slave and half-free …”
“We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths –- that all of us are created equal –- is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall; just as it guided all those men and women, sung and unsung, who left footprints along this great Mall, to hear a preacher say that we cannot walk alone; to hear a King proclaim that our individual freedom is inextricably bound to the freedom of every soul on Earth …”
“It is now our generation’s task to carry on what those pioneers began. For our journey is not complete until our wives, our mothers and daughters can earn a living equal to their efforts. Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law –- for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well. Our journey is not complete until no citizen is forced to wait for hours to exercise the right to vote. Our journey is not complete until we find a better way to welcome the striving, hopeful immigrants who still see America as a land of opportunity — until bright young students and engineers are enlisted in our workforce rather than expelled from our country. Our journey is not complete until all our children, from the streets of Detroit to the hills of Appalachia, to the quiet lanes of Newtown, know that they are cared for and cherished and always safe from harm …”
“We cannot mistake absolutism for principle, or substitute spectacle for politics, or treat name-calling as reasoned debate …”
“We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations …”
“The path towards sustainable energy sources will be long and sometimes difficult. But America cannot resist this transition, we must lead it. We cannot cede to other nations the technology that will power new jobs and new industries, we must claim its promise …”
“We understand that outworn programs are inadequate to the needs of our time. So we must harness new ideas and technology to remake our government, revamp our tax code, reform our schools, and empower our citizens with the skills they need to work harder, learn more, reach higher …”
“The commitments we make to each other through Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security, these things do not sap our initiative, they strengthen us …”
“We are true to our creed when a little girl born into the bleakest poverty knows that she has the same chance to succeed as anybody else, because she is an American; she is free, and she is equal, not just in the eyes of God but also in our own …”
The view from my window, of workman tearing up Perry Street. Take that Perry Street.