With thousands of flags whipping in the winter wind, Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr. was sworn in as the 46th president of the United States on the steps of the U.S. Capitol on January 20.
In his inaugural address, President Biden called on all Americans to unite to overcome the nation’s challenges and secure its future.
“History, faith, and reason show the way, the way of unity. We can see each other not as adversaries but as neighbors. We can treat each other with dignity and respect. We can join forces, stop the shouting, and lower the temperature…This is our historic moment of crisis and challenge, and unity is the path forward.”
To those beyond the borders of the United States, President Biden also had a message:
“We will repair our alliances and engage with the world once again. Not to meet with yesterday’s challenges, but today’s and tomorrow’s. We will lead not merely by the example of our power, but the power of our example. We will be a strong and trusted partner for peace, progress and security.”
Later that day, President Biden took several executive actions with those goals in mind. One action began the process for the United States to rejoin the Paris climate accord. Another stopped U.S. withdrawal from the World Health Organization. Another rescinds the ban on travelers from some Muslim-majority countries and others from Africa and elsewhere. Yet another pauses construction of the U.S.-Mexico border wall and ends an emergency declaration that helped authorize its funding.
In his inauguration address, President Biden called on the people of the United States “to start afresh.” He challenged them together to “write an American story of hope, not fear; of unity and not division…The story that tells ages yet to come that we answered the call of history…That our America secured liberty at home and stood once again as a beacon to the world.”