What a celebration.
The country’s top musical stars joined masses of ordinary Americans on the National Mall today to serenade President-elect Barack Obama, offering up an emotional and patriotic tribute to open the inaugural festivities for the nation’s first African American chief executive.
Onstage in front of the Lincoln Memorial, with sharpshooters clearly visible atop the marble roof, Obama told the gathered crowd that the optimism that fueled his historic campaign has not waned in the face of military and political challenges from abroad and an unprecedented economic crisis.
“What gives me the greatest hope of all is not the stone and marble that surrounds us today, but what fills the spaces in between,” Obama said. “It is you, Americans of every race and region and station who came here because you believe in what this country can be and because you want to help us get there. . . . (more… )