From the text of President Barack Obama's Inauguration speech:
"A nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous."
"To all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more."
"This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed - why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall, and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath."
It is difficult for me to put into words my feelings after witnessing the swearing in of our new President. I am filled with hope, genuinely proud of my country, and excited to be a citizen of the US.
Pride and hope in my country is a new thing to me - ever since I was old enough to care about politics I have felt frustrated, no - angered, constantly put-down, subverted - and have nearly constantly lamented the decisions, or indecisions, of our leaders.
Today I feel refreshed, renewed, full of hope. I see the corruption and ineptitude of our government diminishing. I feel like I have had a say, like my voice has been heard.
What I have for so long yearned for I can now see on the horizon. Finally, it looks like justice will come to the poor and downtrodden of the earth. Finally, it appears that we'll reject the greed that has raped our planet, ravaged our sacred home. Finally, I see America becoming a leader in justice and rightness like I read about in history. Finally, I can hope that my children will look at my generation with gratitude as an example of conquering selfishness and propagating true freedom - not just freedom from tyrrany, but freedom of life, of health, of learning, and of self-respect.
May the Lord bless this country that we may serve the world and the meek by whom we will be judged at the last day.