January 20, 2009 – Barack Obama’s Historic Inauguration

  • Inauguration Day 2009
  • D.C. residents celebrate first Black president
  • Sounds of DC: Native American powwow
  • Progressive presence at inauguration
  • Fundraising for the inauguration
  • Sounds of DC: Kirtan chanting
  • Youth have their say on Obama
  • International voices bring messages weigh in
  • Remembering Odetta

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Inauguration Day 2009

Many people with tickets did not get in to the cordoned off areas for a select 200,000 people. Pedestrian traffic patterns were confusing and lines so long, security was unable to screen every ticketed person before the inauguration began. But those without tickets stretched from the US Capital to the Washington monument, more than a mile away, and beyond.

After the inaugural ceremony ended, George Bush was taken by helicopter to Air Force One, and headed back to Texas. Obama attended a Congressional luncheon before heading to the massive inauguration parade, before heading to a series of balls this evening. During the luncheon today after the swearing in ceremony, Senator Edward Kennedy collapsed, reportedly from a seizure and was taken from the Capitol for medical attention. President Obama, during brief remarks at the end of the luncheon, said part of him will be with Senator Kennedy today, and sent his prayers to Kennedy and his family. There were reports that another Senator, Robert Byrd, also experienced some health problems during the luncheon.


D.C. residents celebrate first Black president

The city hosting the historic inauguration: Washington, D.C., is nearly 60 percent African-American, and in the district’s black communities, the swearing in of America’s first black president has particular resonance.  Kat Aaron has more.


Sounds of DC: Native American powwow

Through out today’s newscast, we’ll bring you sounds from events happening around the capital area in conjunction with the inauguration. Tanya Snyder brings us an audio postcard of sounds from a powwow held by American Indians from the Crow Nation of Montana, the Oneida Nation Wisconsin, and the Coeur-d’Alene and Nez Perce Tribes.


Progressive presence at inauguration

For many activists, their destination today was several blocks north of the White House – at McPherson Square.  FSRN’s Sam Greenspan spent some time with various groups to get a sense of how the progressive movement is responding to the Inauguration.


Fundraising for the inauguration

The Obama campaign used the internet masterfully to raise funds during the campaign. But the queries for cash didn’t stop after Election Day. And the limits on donations for today’s events were dramatically different than those imposed during the campaign. FSRNs Karen Miller has more.


Sounds of DC: Kirtan chanting

Also in DC, 500 people gathered with some of the top Kirtan performers in the world.  The yoga community gathered to sing the ancient Indian style of participatory chanting to usher along the movement of change. We bring you some sounds from this event.


Youth have their say on Obama

The Inauguration celebration sweeping DC today brings excitement and hope among youth… High School student and Radio Rootz youth producer, Jerren Walden reports on the hopes of some of the young attendees.


International voices bring messages weigh in

We now take a moment to go outside of DC – and travel abroad – where many people watched today’s events with anticipation. Our reporters Arusha Topazinni, Afridai Afridi, Mariana Martinez recorded these voices from 3 continents.


Remembering Odetta

One person who wanted to be in Washington DC for the inauguration events — and who hoped to perform there – is Odetta. But the musician, singer, actor and activist died in December before being able to witness this benchmark in history. We’ll close the newscast today with this song, as a tribute to Odetta whom many called “The Voice of the Civil Rights Movement.”

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