President Obama this weekend took his oath of office and was inaugurated on Martin Luther King Jr. Day for his second term. With hundreds of thousands of his supporters gathered on the capitol mall, Obama delivered his speech on the steps of the US capitol. Following the speech he signed several documents, and participated in the official inauguration ceremony after which he and Michelle Obama attended formal inaugural balls.
Performing at the inauguration was singer Beyonce with the national anthem, and poet Richard Blanco, who, in reading his poem One Today, became the first openly gay, first Latino, and the youngest person to read at a Presidential inauguration.
Media analysts described Obama’s inauguration speech as “evolved and unapologetic” (New York Times), “a Progressive Manifesto” (Daily Beast), and a “Liberal Vision” (also New York Times). He openly addressed issues like poverty and climate change, even going as far as to use those actual words. The President also discussed the end of war, pushed back against attacks on social security and medicare, and alluded to his ongoing initiatives against gun violence.
GUEST: Kevin Alexander Gray, contributing editor to Counterpunch, regular commentator on the Sirius Radio Show, Live from the Land of Hope and Dreams with Dave Marsh, and author of the book Waiting for Lightning to Strike: The Fundamentals of Black Politics