Op/Ed: Normalcy, An Inauguration Afterthought

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Every four years, in the third week of January and usually very chilly mornings, America inaugurates the incoming administration. On some occasions it is the joy of a second term, a carry over, and in other times, the one-termer is replaced.

January 20, 2021 was that type of day. The one-termer was sent packing, after a tumultuous final year, which began eerily as it ended with an article of Impeachment poised to head to the senate. And squeezed between, a global pandemic, an economic crash, demands for equality, an election, sedition, murder. The detonation which began one year before sent shock wave upon shock wave across America and the world.


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The idea of normalcy differs from person to person. Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan said, "What a hunger there is for "normal," for stately, serene and dignified. For seeing forms maintained."

Is it traditions that have caused the hunger for normalcy? Or is it the restrictions placed upon society due to the silent and deadly coronavirus? An enemy we can't understand. We don't see a lurking shadow, feel the inner voice redirecting our footsteps from the approaching trouble, we are lost and nearly without weapons. How can we fight what we can't see?


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The inauguration presented both sides of our realities: "The stately, serene and, dignified" and the battle gear to fight the lurking, very-present danger which is always poised.

Even as some would hope that a miracle of change would be present after the rolling days of the previous administration. The divisive days of a deeply imprinted campaign message stolen from America's greatest generation.


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Urging those who believe America can in some way reach back into time, to those days when the battle against a global tyranny wove all Americans together, from the least to the greatest, all unified for a single cause, and they became America's greatest generation.

The pageantry of the Inauguration presented a different message, a unified message of democracy, which is the only path for all Americans to walk to achieve that goal: the defeat of that which would divide us. And presented a belief that throughout this mighty and great land, each person, uniquely different and inherently similar, could find one common thread, one single common thread to build a future, and to recapture the feelings of Victory over Japan Day or Victory in Europe Day.

Our generation will have these moments, a V-C day, when we achieve victory over the coronavirus. It won't be as jubilant as those moments caught in history, and for many the season of sorrow it has produced will linger long after the celebration of victory, much like those "back home" who lost loved ones on battlefield in distant lands.


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A night before the chilly January Inauguration morning, a ceremony memorializing 400,000 Americans who bravely fought this enemy, this deadly disease which has invaded our lands, an enemy who is relentless, does not discriminate, does not tire, and does not grow weary, captured a small moment of time. 

Ushering in the new administration, the traditions of politics. No more churning the cauldron of divisiveness with a potion of madness. Although the honeymoon period will eventually wear off, for now, the traditions of politics, has taken some ground solidifying a stronghold. A little normalcy in a very unnormal time.

The fight is not for a new way of life, the fight is so we can retain our way of life. We can gather, we can enjoy traditions, we can live free, without restrictions. Just simply normal.

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