Joe Biden has commenced his presidency with a strident call to the nation to unify and save American democracy. It may be too late.
The setting for US President Joe Biden’s inauguration address reflected his words. Some 25,000 National Guard troops were deployed to safeguard the event, more than are currently deployed in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and Africa combined. Biden spoke to an almost empty National Mall, cleared because of threats of violence, standing in front of the Capitol, invaded two weeks earlier for the first time since the War of 1812.
In this wartime-like atmosphere, Biden declared: “We face an attack on our democracy and on truth….” He sees the solution not in military, police, or judicial actions, but rather in uniting the American people so they treat each other with dignity and respect. Unity is now Biden’s catch cry and perhaps the measure he will be judged against.