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24 January 2021

The Bernie Sanders memes

SENATOR BERNIE SANDERS ignited the internet for an inauguration image that showed him seated in thick mittens, a parka, and a totally chilled out mood. Memes broke out in hundreds and flooded social networks. The images became a hilarious sideshow to the Biden inauguration, and punctuated the global community's sense of joy at the start of a new presidency.

The Biden inauguration ends with a bang

PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN'S inauguration this week was like no other in American history. It went through heightened security measures and COVID-19 precautions in the nation's capital. It also became the first inauguration snubbed by the outgoing president since 1869.

21 January 2021

The Biden inaugural address

HERE ARE excerpts from President Joe Biden's inaugural address, which I received on email this morning from the Biden Inaugural Committee. President Biden wrote the 21-minute speech with the assistance of speechwriter Vinay Reddy, senior advisor Mike Donilon, incoming Secretary of State Tony Blinken, and chief of staff Ron Klain. The address was described by the New York Times as "a return to the ordinary discord of democracy, with a reminder that politics doesn’t have to be a raging fire, destroying everything in its path."

20 January 2021

The Biden inauguration

AMERICA HAS a new president, and a new day has begun. Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr. takes office as the 46th president of the United States at the crossroads of historical moments. On the one hand, Kamala Harris is sworn in as the country's first female vice president. On the other, America is experiencing deep economic losses, socio-political divisions, and health crises like never before. President Biden delivered a 21-minute speech filled with compassion and commitment. It left me teary-eyed.

17 January 2021

COVID-19 : India begins the vaccination

PRIME MINISTER Narendra Modi has launched one of the world's biggest inoculation drives—targeting India's 10.5 million infections (against a population of 1.4 billion). The country anticipated this inoculation drive highly, as its many lockdowns have not impacted virus control. The first phase of the vaccination rollout targets 30 million healthcare and frontline workers. By July, the government plans to inoculate 300 million people.

10 January 2021

The Bahá'í life in a year like no other

THE BAHÁ'Í World News Service has released a video compendium of the most compelling stories of the global Bahá’í community in 2020. The video illustrates what Bahá’ís do: collectively serving humanity and refining their lives according to the teachings of Bahá’u’lláh. The year needed the greatest need for togetherness, and Baháʼís have shown how hope, effort, and unity helped alleviate human suffering in societies worldwide.

07 January 2021

Storming the hill

SOURCE: The New York Times

THE VIOLENCE at the US Capitol wasn't just a defacement of America's image as the exemplar of democracy. It was a threat to the idea that peace is inevitable. If such disruptive forces could happen at the very core of America's leadership, then it could happen everywhere.

03 January 2021

As 2021 rolls in

MAY CALM fill your daily life,
   that you may hear the chords of violins
     and not the discords of violence.

   May you hear again the music of the stage,
     see the starry lights of the concert hall,
       taste the magic of the cinema.
         feel the heart of the art.

     May you find a piece of art in anything you do.
     May the work you do help those around you,
       that they may help others in return.

       And may the earth heal.
       May the skies continue to clear,
         and the waters remain blue.
       May the air you breathe
         fill your lungs and your vaccinated veins
           with the cleansing power
             of a new-found purity.

If your birthday comes in quarantine,
   may you celebrate the day
     with virtual pomp and splendor.
May the splendor spill over the next day,
   and the next day,
     and the next.
May your birthday fill your soul with love.

   May your love of family and ties of fellowship
     continue to grow in harmony and peace.
   May you have a chance
     to hug them in the streets,
       to hold each others' hands,
         to smile beyond the masks,
           to dance again, together.

     And when grief arrives and leaves a heartache,
       may the memory of joy swiftly heal the pain.

   May you rise above it all,
     ever hopeful,
       trusting in God.

May you have
   a healthful,