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What the Second Inauguration of Barack Obama Means for People Living with HIV


Yesterday morning, Barack Obama, the 44th president of the United States of America, stood on the steps of the Capitol Building before a sea of his supporters to receive the oath of office—administered by Chief Justice John Roberts while members of Congress, his cabinet and his family looked on. And afterwards he gave a rousing speech, wherein he spoke with soaring rhetoric and carefully crafted imagery on the importance of reforming our government, bringing an end to our decade of war and the importance of preserving our national safety net and environment for future generations.

And then he called on the memory of Stonewall—linking the riots that began there to the civil rights battles of Selma and Seneca Falls—becoming the first president in the history of this nation to mention the rights of the LGBT community during his inauguration.

And I teared up, genuinely moved.

It was a far cry from the first time Obama stood before the nation and received the oath from Chief Justice Roberts four years before and gave a different speech—just as carefully crafted, with rhetoric that was equally soaring.

And I felt like the only man in America who wasn’t excited at the thought of an Obama presidency.


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