Noonan: Set Aside Cynicism, and Soak It In

Forget past, partisanship and absorb inaugural magic
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jan 16, 2009 2:03 PM CST
This undated file photo shows the mixed media collage by Shepard Fairey, photo courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, titled "Barack Obama."   (AP Photo )
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(Newser) – The sights and sounds of a presidential inauguration are enough to inspire the most jaded of observers, if they’re so willing, writes Peggy Noonan in the Wall Street Journal. Sure, presidencies come and go, with victories and failures. But at the majestic ceremony, the best option is to forget partisanship, forget dashed hopes, and soak it in. “To believe, suspend disbelief,” Noonan writes. "If you don't put your skepticism aside, you will not fully absorb and experience the drama. You must allow it to be real for you."

In Washington these days, “the inauguration is all anyone talks about,” never failing to note how many they’ve attended. But “everyone feels that this one is different.” A cabdriver offers up his own draft of an inauguration speech. People hold their breath in the White House corridors. “A long-oppressed people have raised up a president,” Noonan writes. If America “can do this, we can do anything.”