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Jim McDermottJanuary 20, 2009
As soon as Obama finishes speaking, people begin leaving. Seriously, it looks like the ninth inning at Yankee Stadium. I can’t even see or hear poet Elizabeth Alexander at times through the dispersing crowds. But the text is a gem.

***

A last prayer, from the Rev. Dr. Joseph E. Lowery. He looks old, his voice is weak, and he speaks in rhyme. "God of our weary years, God of our silent tears." Poignant, but what is this, "Horton Hears a Who"?

He quickly becomes the fan favorite, calling the Obama girls "our little angelics" and offering a great rhyming ending that plays on each racial group in the United States. He even had us shouting Amen. We love him.

***

The inauguration ends with the singing of the Star Spangled Banner. I realize it’s the first time in about six years that I have been asked to sing the song without feeling as though it’s been coopted by a certain ideology. For the first time in a long time, I sing along.

***

The event over, people swarm forward to take photographs, and then follow the herd. As we leave the Capitol area, a whisper moves through the crowd, and people began to stop and look back. On the jumbotron, George and Laura Bush are getting into the helicopter. Within moments, the helicopter flies directly overhead. Ecstatic waving and cheering. It’s hard to believe, but they’re really gone.

***

On the way home, my heat pads suddenly got so hot, I had to get them away from my skin.

It had only taken four hours.

But then again, if there was a moral to the day, from the early morning line to the President’s speech to the helicopter departure, it was that good things take time.

So as I walked home I just tried to savor that moment of midwinter heat.

Jim McDermott, S.J.

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14 years ago
Who loves Lowery? His benediction ended with an insulting attack against white people. He does not believe white people have embraced the "right" and waits for that day to come. He is a racist!
14 years ago
On Thursday, January 22, Right to Life marched in Washington D.C. to overturn Roe v. Wade. The unborn, those who have not been brought forth from their Mother's womb alive, are persons according to the definition of a person, which is, a Human Individual. Each individual Person who resides in their Mother's womb, is the same Person who comes forth from their Mother's womb. This is true, no matter the location, be it Washington or Alabama, New York, or California... Personhood does not depend on location. Just as a Person could not be a slave in Alabama but a person in New York, so too, a child is a Person in every location, which includes inside or outside of their Mother's womb. As I watched those beautiful daughters of the President and Mrs.Obama, I knew, that had the President mentioned abortion, and they had inquired as to its meaning, it would be his daughters that would tell him the truth.
14 years ago
'''God of our weary years, God of our silent tears.' Poignant, but what is this, 'Horton Hears a Who'?'' Actually, it's a line from ''The Negro National Anthem'': http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lift_Every_Voice_and_Sing

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