When President Barack Obama was sworn into office for his second term on Monday, he became the first president to address the issue of gay rights in his inaugural speech, a move that Penn State student Sarah Kim was glad to see.
Kim (freshman-secondary education) said she was happy that Obama was re-elected because she believes he has a very clear stance on social issues like marriage equality and gay rights.
Kim said that there could have been no better forum to address the people of the United States than in front of a crowd of hundreds of thousands of people on the steps of the U.S. Capitol Building.
“You can’t get anymore public than the presidential inauguration, so I was happy to see him address the issues there,” Kim said.
Students Kahlil de Guzman (junior-earth science and policy) and Myles Davis were in agreement that during his speech, Obama looked worn-down, both citing his gray hair as a factor that contributed to his changing look.
“Obama was the young, new, hip guy when he started, and now he just looks more experienced,” Davis (junior-electrical engineering) said.
David Wagura said the one thing he would like to see Obama get done in his second term is the establishment of a budget.
Wagura (sophomore-industrial engineering and economics) said that there needs to be a clear budget because there is too much uncertainty with Obama’s policies, and businesses won’t want to invest when there’s uncertainty.
“Without clear certainty in his fiscal policy, there will not be the economic boom that we’re supposed to have,” Wagura said.
Although Courtney Hogan (sophomore-international politics) voted for former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in this year’s presidential election, she said she watched the inauguration because it’s an important event and a historic moment.
She said that Obama’s speech was good overall, but she would have liked to have seen him make more concrete promises.
“His promises were too big during his first term, so now he’s shying away from making any big promises and talking about his planned actions,” Hogan said. “Obama’s in charge so he has to be the one to get things done — he needs to lead by example.”