To celebrate Presidents’ Day, I followed the recent suggestion that historian Clay Jenkinson made to the current president: read through some of his 44 predecessors’ inaugural addresses. He specifically mentions these:
- Thomas Jefferson’s first
- Abraham Lincoln’s second
- George Washington’s second
- Ronald Reagan’s first
- John Kennedy’s
It took a little time, but it was well worth it. In those speeches I saw vision, respect for others, calls for unity, and humility — they sang the Song of America. There were also reminders that we, everyday citizens with our own ideals and actions, hold the key to America’s future.
BTW, you can listen to Clay Jenkinson portray our third president every week on The Thomas Jefferson Hour. That’s well worth it, too.