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Write Your Own Inauguration Speech

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Contributor:
Samantha Lee
Samantha Lee
Pic: gnuser

Think you could have done a better job than Obama?

Go to atom.com/spotlights/inauguration_speech_generator/  to generate an Inauguration Speech more worthy.

Remember, a noun is a naming word, a verb is a doing word, an adjective is a describing word. Because I had to look it up.
 
Here’s my effort:
 
My fellow Americans, today is a shiny day. You have shown the world that "hope" is not just another word for "tree", and that "change" is not only something we can believe in again, but something we can actually run.

Today we celebrate, but let there be no mistake – America faces pretty and colourful challenges like never before. Our economy is insane. Americans can barely afford their mortgages, let alone have enough money left over for trees. Our healthcare system is festering. If your heart is sick and you don't have insurance, you might as well call a lawyer. And America's image overseas is tarnished like a kitchen sink bathrobe. But trying together we can right this ship, and set a course for New York.

Finally, I must thank my twiggy family, my gothic campaign volunteers, but most of all, I want to thank clowns for making this historic occasion possible. Of course, I must also thank you, President Bush, for years of talking the American people. Without your spasticated efforts, none of this would have been possible.

 
Obviously, I’m not going to be President any time soon.
 
The two biggest reactions to Obama’s speech have been:
 
“Thank god, we understood a large majority of it.”
“Why on earth did he thank President Bush?”
 
Commentators have said there hasn’t been one defining sentence of the speech- I suspect this is because people who want to find a nice quote actually have to go read the speech now instead of pulling one off the top of their head.
 
Ah, effort.  Here are a few, to save you the trouble:
 
“Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America - they will be met.”
 
“Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.”
 
And, short and sweet:
 
“Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions - who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short.”
 
“Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end.”
“…a nation cannot prosper long when it favours only the prosperous.”
 
And my personal favourite line:
 
“For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies…This is the price and the promise of citizenship.”
 
Aw.
 
But you can talk all you want; look at Nixon’s Inaugural speech, on January 20th, 1969. Although containing some beautiful words and imagery, like:
 
“We have endured a long night of the American spirit. But as our eyes catch the dimness of the first rays of dawn, let us not curse the remaining dark. Let us gather the light.”
 
It also contain this little gem:
”I have taken an oath today in the presence of God and my countrymen to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
 
Oy, Vey.
Bush was alarmingly coherent and…right, when he said “the stakes for America are never small.”
Then he went and screwed it up, saying “Civility is not a tactic or a sentiment. It is the determined choice of trust over cynicism, of community over chaos.”
 
Cynicism and chaos. Two words that sum up the legacy of the Entire Bush Administration.

Clinton’s speech was inspiring, encouraging Americans to step up:

 
“This ceremony is held in the depth of winter. But, by the words we speak and the faces we show the world, we force the spring.”
 
But he ruined it too: “To renew America, we must be bold.”
A little too bold, it would seem.
 
But Obama’s speech did what no one else’s speech has done; out of 44 presidents, he is the only one that got 2 million people off their butts to acknowledge him, to acknowledge a new beginning.
 
Jeff Shesol, a Clinton speech writer, put it best:
 
“It may not be the most inspirational speech he has ever given, but it's surely the most purposeful. It was a display of strength (his) and a summoning of strength (ours).”

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