At noon on Jan. 20, 2017, Donald J. Trump was officially inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States. However, the spirit of this usually celebratory occasion was dampened by the news of nationwide protests.
These demonstrations directly reflect the feelings of citizens who disapprove of Trump’s policies and conservative beliefs. As these protests intensify, Americans everywhere wonder if this unrest is indicative of the political climate for the next four years.
Some who oppose the protestors view their outspoken actions as unpatriotic and destructive. While some protests fit this description, others argue that protesters are simply demonstrating their Constitutional right to peacefully assemble and share their opinion.
“It’s really discouraging that, instead of celebration, this election has been met with violence and protest. That being said, I think marches and peaceful rallies are a great way to become a part of the political process and stand in solidarity with a cause you believe in. It’s also encouraging that people care about our country and that we have laws that protect people’s right to protest,” senior Brooke Huerter said.
After his inauguration, President Trump delivered a speech, considered by CNN anchor Jake Tapper to be “one of the most radical inaugural speeches” in recent history. In fact, the new President’s speech was the first in American history to use words such as “carnage,” “tombstones,” and “trapped.”
President Trump’s critics consider these details a dreary glance ahead into the next four years, while his supporters refer to the hopeful tone of his speech to boost morale.
Even former President Barack Obama encouraged the public to look upon this uncertain time as a cultivation of hope for the future: “We will rediscover our loyalty to each other. When you open your heart to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice,” President Obama said.
People nationwide as well as today’s leaders urge the public to stay hopeful and continue to contribute positively to society. Despite their beliefs, the most important thing for each citizen to live by is the quote by 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln: “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”
Check out President Trump’s full inauguration speech below (video source: ABC news).