The inauguration of the president of the United States is a ceremony to mark the commencement of a new four-year term of the president of the United States. The inauguration takes place for each new presidential term, even if the president is continuing in office for a second term. Since 1937, it has taken place at noon EST (11 am CST) on January 20 (unless it falls on a Sunday).
I still remember watching the inauguration ceremony of President George Bush Sr. in 1989. I was a kindergartener at the time, young and completely naive about politics. I don’t even remember who my parents voted for in that election, it didn’t matter. All that mattered was that President Bush had been elected and we watched as a family and supported the President. Watching that inauguration left a lasting impression on me — and I still remember it 30+ years later.
Now as a mother to twins in 1st grade and a 2nd grader, I look forward to watching the inauguration with them (in 2021). They ask a lot of questions and it gives me an opportunity to answer those questions in a clear way – in a way that they will understand and in a way that allows them to hear about how democracy works. I am able to tell them how or why I voted how I did – but also tell them that through the years they will form their own opinions and world views and will have the opportunity to have those views heard once they turn 18.
Through the years our country has become more and more divided – but I believe it is our job as parents to raise children who look at the full picture. Children who understand how democracy works and why it is important. Children who love their country AND love the people in their country. Children who will grow up to form an opinion and who will seek to understand perspectives of those who may have a different opinion or life experience.
So next week my kids and I will watch the inauguration together. I will answer their questions, and I hope that 30 years from now they still remember watching it with me. Kids are influential and what we (as parents) say, matters. We have a tough job ahead of us in raising the next generation of leaders, and I hope more than anything that they grow up to be loving and accepting and that they always have the ability to view things from other peoples perspectives. Because that is how we grow and that is how we will unite.