Obama to take oath on 2 Bibles
WASHINGTON — President Obama is putting a symbolic twist on a time-honored tradition, taking the oath of office for his second term with his hand placed not on a single Bible, but two — one owned by Martin Luther King Jr. and one by Abraham Lincoln.
The inclusion of King's Bible is particularly significant, because the inauguration will occur on Jan. 21, the federal holiday in honor of the civil rights leader, who delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech 50 years ago at the Lincoln Memorial. Obama will be facing the memorial as he takes the oath. King's Bible, which his children say he used early in his career as a preacher, has never been part of a presidential inauguration.
The selection of the pair of Bibles is richly symbolic of the struggle for equality in America, beginning with Lincoln's emancipation of the slaves through King's civil rights movement and ultimately to Obama becoming the nation's first black president. Inaugural planners say Obama plans to place his left hand on the stacked Bibles held by first lady Michelle Obama as he raises his right hand to repeat the oath administered by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts. It hasn't been determined which will be on top with Obama's hand resting on it, but King's is larger, so it may need to be on the bottom.
Obama used the Lincoln Bible while taking the oath four years ago — the first time it had been used since the 16th president's inauguration in 1861.
Obama's inaugural committee said that the president plans to use the first lady's family's Bible for a private swearing-in at the White House on Sunday.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- New York City’s salt warning rule to take effect at chain restaurants
- Opposition mounts to genetic modification of human embryos
- House majority leader predicts no government shutdown over Planned Parenthood
- EPA increases ethanol in gasoline supply for 2016
- Storm dumps snow on Northern Plains
- Cleveland panel OKs lakefront Superman statue
- Atlantic Coast cities rise up against offshore drilling plans
- House may move quickly to overhaul visa waiver program
- ‘12 Days of Christmas’ items top $34K, up 0.6 percent
- Artists plan to rebuild Alaska art display damaged by tides
- Investors buy shares in college students: Purdue University thinks it’s wave of future