Hi there, Dear Reader. It’s Wednesday, January 20, 2021, which started as the last day of the Donald Trump Presidency and the Inauguration of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. as the 46th President of the United States of America. It’s 72˚F (22˚C) here in New Hometown, Florida under sunny skies. With the wind blowing from the west northwest at 5 MPH (11 KM/H) and humidity at 43%, the feels-like temperature is 72˚F (22˚C). According to the forecast, we can expect partly sunny this afternoon and a high of 73˚F (23˚C). Tonight, skies will be partly cloudy, and the low will be 46˚F (8˚C).
Well, as I said earlier, today was the last half-day of Trump’s single term in the White House. Thankfully, he did not offer a blanket pardon to his supporters who were involved in the storming of the U.S. Capitol two weeks ago, nor did he attempt to pardon himself, his family, or Rudy Giuliani. (He did spend much of his last day pardoning others, including rapper Lil Wayne, Trump adviser and Breitbart co-founder Steve Bannon, and former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.)
Before flying to his estate Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida aboard Air Force One for the last time as the 45th President, Trump spoke to a crowd of his loyalists – many of whom wore the famous red MAGA caps – at Joint Base Andrews near Washington, DC.
In an often incoherent address which was full of Trumpian boasts, the former President patted himself in the back – metaphorically, anyway – and making ridiculous claims about “rebuilding” the U.S. armed forces.
What we’ve done has been amazing, by any standard, we rebuilt the United States military, created a new force called Space Force that, in itself, would be a major achievement for a regular administration, we were not a regular administration.
We took care of the vets – 91 percent approval rating they’ve never had that before, the vets have given us the VA, the vets have given us an approval rating like has never been before. We took care of our vets and beautiful vets they were very badly treated before we came along. And as you know, we get them great service and we pick up the bill and they can go out and they can see a doctor, if they have to wait long periods of time. We got it so that we can, sadly, get rid of people that don’t treat our vets properly. We didn’t have any of those rights before when I came on. So, our vets are happy, our people are happy. Our military is thrilled.
We also got tax cuts, the largest tax cut and reform in the history of our country by far. I hope they don’t raise your taxes. But if they do, I told you so! – Donald Trump in his last address as President, January 20, 2021.
In sharp contrast, President Joe Biden – who at 78 is the oldest person in U.S. history to be elected to the office he now holds – spoke more eloquently, without bluster and with an eye for the divisions in our country. Here are some excerpts from his Inaugural address:
- My message to those beyond our borders — America has been tested, and we’ve come out stronger for it. We will repair our alliances and engage with the world once again.
- We’ll lead, not merely by the example of our power, but by the power of our example. We’ll be a strong and trusted partner for peace, progress, and security.
- Today, we celebrate triumph not of a candidate but of a cause, the cause of democracy. People and will of the people have been heard. We have learned again that democracy is precious, democracy is fragile and at this hour, my friends, democracy has prevailed.
- I know forces that divide us are deep & they are real. But I also know they are not new. Our history has been a constant struggle between the American ideal that we’re all created equal and harsh ugly reality that racism, nativism, fear, demonization have long torn us apart.
- Through tough times in US history — the Civil War, the Great Depression, both world wars and the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks — “our better angels have always prevailed.”
- In every instance, Americans have been able to come together for the greater good. History, faith, and reason show the way, the way of unity.
- Today, on this January day, my whole soul is in this: Bringing America together, uniting our people, uniting our nation.
- Uniting to fight the foes we face. Anger, resentment and hatred, extremism, lawlessness, violence, disease, joblessness, and hopelessness. With unity we can do great things, important things.
Like all incoming Presidents, Biden faces many difficult challenges in the days ahead, including the COVID-19 pandemic, getting a new stimulus package through Congress, and re-entering several global organizations his predecessor had pulled the United States out of, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Paris Climate Change Accords,
Biden also will have to figure out some way to not let his first days in office be overshadowed by the impeachment trial of Donald Trump. The new President is on record as not being in favor of impeaching the former President, but Trump’s behavior since Election Day in November and his two-months-long campaign to reverse the election result caused the events of January 6, and since the Congress has decided to go the impeachment route, Biden has to let it proceed.
And so, the four-year-long national nightmare that was the Trump Presidency is over. Now, most Americans are hoping that happy days are here again under the Biden Administration.