Hi, all! As we approach the Inauguration (*shudders*), I thought I'd post these YouTube videos for comparison purposes. If JFK isn't your guy, I'm sure you can find plenty of Inaugural speeches and pageantry for other Presidents, but if you stick with me, here are some random thoughts:
This shows JFK's speech of thanks to Frank Sinatra for putting together this Inaugural Gala, and it was mentioned that some Broadway shows had to shut down temporarily as the plays' stars were all in Washington! I'm just guessing that there won't be the same amount of A-listers at Trump's Gala.
This speech is Cold War-heavy, but JFK came to office a committed Cold Warrior. He began to move away from that position, however, especially after staring down into the abyss of the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. After that he pushed hard for a Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (signed by him in 1963), better communications between him and Khrushchev (the infamous Hot Line), and efforts to lay the foundation for detente between the U.S. and the Soviet Union. His speech in June of 1963 at American University emphasized that peace should not be a Pax Americana
, but a global peace. He also had quietly committed to pulling the American advisors out of Vietnam, keeping it on the downlow because he had to get re-elected in 1964, but he thought it was crazy talk to commit U.S. ground troops there. He publicly called it Vietnam's war to win.
Anyway, the Inaugural Speech itself is delivered forcefully and with eloquence. Think of that as you listen to Trump hem and haw and probably attack his critics in his speech. I don't know how this guy is going to last in office. Presidents are criticized for what they eat for breakfast. Thin skins don't last long in the Oval Office.
Finally, a short piece by Movietone News
(still going strong in 1961!), that gives an overview of the day. It was a brilliant day, cold and clear, and as anyone in snow country knows, the sky is incredibly blue and the air sharp and clean on a day after a major snowstorm. So began the American Camelot, glittering like diamonds. :)