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'Politics doesn’t have to be a raging fire': Highlights from the historic U.S. inauguration of Joe Biden, Kamala Harris

Elisabetta Bianchini
·5-min read

The inauguration of U.S. President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris was emotional, star-studded, with a strong message of uniting the country coming from the 46th president.

After such a historic occasion, there were several moments that got people’s attention around the world.

Joe Biden’s message of unity, not division

In his first speech as U.S. president Joe Biden shared a message of unity, stressing that this is a time for Americans to listen to each other, even when they may have different opinions.

“To restore the soul and secure the future of America requires so much more than words, it requires the most illusive of all things in a democracy, unity,” Biden said. “Let’s begin to listen to one another again, hear one another, see one another, show respect to one another.”

“Disagreement must not lead to disunion and I pledge this to you, I will be a president for all Americans.”

He also stressed the danger of misinformation spreading through society.

“Politics doesn’t have to be a raging fire, destroying everything in its path,” Biden said. “Every disagreement doesn’t have to be a cause for total war and we must reject the culture in which facts themselves are manipulated and even manufactured.”

The U.S. President also took the time to ask for everyone to join in a silent prayer to remember the more than 400,000 people who lost their lives during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kamala Harris makes history

No one can talk about Wednesday’s inauguration without including that fact that Kamala Harris has made history after becoming the first woman, first woman of colour, to be sworn in as U.S. Vice President.

Throughout the entire election campaign, culminating in this momentous moment, women and girls around the world have looked at Harris as a role model and a symbol of hope.

Lady Gaga sings the national anthem

Lady Gaga was at the event to sing the national anthem, dressed in with a beautifully voluminous red skirt and a gold dove broach on her top. Of course, she also showed up for the occasion with a gold microphone to complete the look.

People on social media were quick to commend Gaga on her rendition of the national anthem.

Jennifer Lopez’s ‘Let’s Get Loud’ callout

Lady Gaga wasn’t the only star at the inauguration. Jennifer Lopez was also there to sing “This Land is Your Land,” rocking an all-white ensemble.

During her passionate performance of one of the most iconic American folk songs, the star couldn’t help insert a little bit of a personal touch, calling out her popular song released in 1999, “Let’s Get Loud.”

Powerful words from poet Amanda Gorman

One of the most impactful and powerful moments from the inauguration came from 22-year-old Amanda Gorman, the youngest inaugural poet.

Her reading of her work “The Hill We Climb” added to the message of unity and togetherness as the U.S. enters its next administration, prevailing over “catastrophe.”

“We will not march back to what was but move to what shall be. A country that is bruised but whole, benevolent but bold, fierce and free,” she read.

“There is always light if only we're brave enough to see. If only we're brave enough to be it.”

Learn more about the inauguration ceremony in VR: