First a brief history lesson on the inauguration of the President of the United States.

From 1793 to 1933 this took place on March 4 but in 1933 the 20th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified and called for the terms of both the President and Vice President to end at noon on the 20th day of January.

That’s the way it’s been since 1937 with three exceptions when that date fell on a Sunday.  In those cases the president was sworn into office in a private ceremony on Sunday and then again in a public one on Monday.

That brings us to today when Joe Biden will take the oath of office as the 46th President of the United States and then give his inaugural address to the nation.  It will take place under very different circumstances then in the past and will not include the usual pomp and circumstance.

Instead of a celebration with hundreds of thousands of spectators we are more likely to notice the 25,000 National Guard members on hand to insure peace in the wake of the riot just two weeks ago at the Capitol building.  There will be no parade down Pennsylvania Avenue and no gala balls tonight due to the pandemic, replaced by a virtual parade and a TV special.

Despite that the most important part remains and that is a new president takes office and he does so under extraordinary times and circumstances.  Regardless of your political affiliation you should want him to succeed because the future of America may very well ride on these next four years.  We are divided like never before in our lifetime by political party and it has divided our nation in many other ways.

Four years ago Democrats across the country refused to accept that Donald Trump had somehow won the election and for many reasons never felt like he was “their” president.  The results were often ugly and the lesson that should have been learned is that we can’t let that happen again.

No matter how you feel about the election Joe Biden is about to become “our” president and we should hope and pray that he can help heal our nation because as we know the alternative is not very pretty.

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