Karely Molina Martinez staff writer
Following the riots on Capitol Hill and the second impeachment of President Donald Trump, the inauguration ceremony for President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris marked the third major historical event for the year 2021.
With just three weeks into the year, the inauguration ceremony on Jan. 20 in Washington D.C., coined countless memorable moments, many of which were celebrated by students and teachers alike. Some students, like junior Maya Goldkorn, watched the inauguration during class.
“Parts that stood out to me the most were the actual swearing in of Biden and Harris, of course, as well as Amanda Gorman’s delivery of her poem, ‘The Hill We Climb,’ Goldkorn said. “Watching Biden and Harris being sworn into office made me distinctly proud of this country, and I thought Gorman’s poem was beautifully written, and perfectly captured the hope of the country at the beginning of this new age.”
Like her class, Goldkorn preferred to watch the ceremony live rather than discuss the typical class curriculum.
“The majority of my classmates were very interested in watching the inauguration. When our teacher asked if we wanted to keep watching or go back to our planned curriculum, multiple students expressed a strong desire to watch the entire ceremony. I think we all knew that this was an important moment to witness, regardless of our political beliefs,” Goldkorn said.
Other students, like junior Kate Lewis, watched parts of the ceremony in class but also independently. Lewis took time to reflect and felt “empowered” over the significant moments during the mornings’ event.
“As soon as Kamala Harris stepped up to the podium I teared up. I was so moved by the fact that I got to witness our first woman, let alone person of color, vice president,” Lewis said.
Lewis also took notice of just how different this event was from previous years. While still following many of the same routines and traditions of previous ceremonies, it was clear to Lewis that this year’s ceremony had a different goal.
“I think this ceremony was different then others because, in such a divisive and polarizing time, the ceremony was really pushing unification which I found phenomenal and very necessary,” Lewis said.
Some students, like junior Warren Jacobson, took this time as an opportunity to gather with family and celebrate the memorable event.
“I watched it with my family. Me and my family were huddled up in bed together, just watching it on the TV, all excited. My dad even started crying,” Jacobson said.
While celebrating the memorable event, Jacobson had a constant fear of an unforeseeable circumstance occurring.
“There were just obvious differences about everything. Obviously you saw everyone in masks, everyone was spread out. There was also the constant tension of something bad going to happen, especially due to the insurrection on Jan. 6,” Jacobson said. “I always had this fear in the back of my mind, but thank God nothing happened. But I always had that worry.”
Despite the fear, other students like senior Josh Neidleman felt the celebration of the inauguration was needed after the events this year has brought so far.
“Every Wednesday of this month has been crazy, you had the storming of the Capitol, impeachment, inauguration—the three Wednesdays. I think inaugurations are supposed to be like, ‘Let’s all put our weapons down.’ [They are] supposed to be unifiers that help to calm everyone down after a combative election,” Neidleman said. “It was a little bit boring because I kind of wanted to see something exciting happen. The most exciting thing was the Bernie memes.”
Some students found the inauguration ceremony refreshing. Freshman Amir Mehrtash felt this was a new beginning for our country.
“It felt good that four years of Trump was finally over and that there’s a new chance to rebuild this country and come back stronger. It was really nice to also see Vice President Harris break so many barriers in becoming the first female, African American and Asian-American VP this country has had,” Mehrtash said. “I’m hopeful that President Biden and Vice President Harris will make this country better in their four years of serving in office.”