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Obama Inauguration: Four More Years, Top 10 History Quiz To Swear By

REUTERS, TELEGRAPH (UK), CNN, SENATE.GOV (USA)

Worldcrunch

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Barack Obama will be sworn in Monday as the President of The United States for a second time. A swearing-in ceremony, parade and an inaugural ball will mark the event.

A private ceremony took place on Sunday because the U.S. Constitution mandates that the president take office on January 20.

photo: White House via Wikipedia

The ceremony will take place on the steps of the Capitol building in Washington D.C., followed by an address to the nation from Obama.

Reuters reports that in is inaugural address, Obama is expected to talk about the need for political compromise where possible, a reminder of the intense battles in his first term that led to paralysis and dysfunction in Washington. His top policy goals for the first year, so far, include tightening gun regulations in response to the massacre of 20 children and six adults at a Conneticut elementary school in December. Obama is seeking an overhaul of immigration laws and tax reform.

With January 21 falling on the national holiday that celebrates Dr Martin Luther King Jr., a personal idol for the POTUS, Obama will also have a chance to draw historic parallels. While taking the oath on Monday, he will place his left hand on two Bibles - one once owned by Abraham Lincoln and the other by King.

Here's 10 things you didn't know about inaugurations:

1. Until Franklin Pierce in 1853, instead of putting one’s left hand on it, the President kissed the bible. - CNN

2.Three Presidents didn’t even use a bible: John Quincy Adams, Theodore Roosevelt and Lyndon B. Johnson. - CNN

3. George W Bush had the Masonic bible used by George Washington in 1789 flown in under armed guard for his first ceremony but due to poor weather, a family bible was substituted. - senate.gov

4. Obama will be the first President to take the oath both privately as well as a publicly. - CNN

5. Bill Clinton was the first President to embrace technology and have his inauguration streamed live on the Internet. - senate.gov

6. By Monday, Obama will have been sworn in four times, two for each term, matching Franklin Roosevelt, who won four terms. A second Obama swearing-in was deemed necessary in 2009 when Chief Justice John Roberts flubbed the first one. - Reuters

7. George Washington delivered the shortest address at his second inauguration in Philadelphia. It totaled 135 words - tweetable for sure! - CNN

8. Lyndon Johnson is the only President to take the oath on an airplane - Air Force One en route to Washington after the assassination of JFK. - senate.gov

9. The first time women participated in the ceremony was during Woodrow Wilson’s second inauguration. - senate.gov

10. Obama seemed a bit distracted before the ceremony, declaring: "I love Michelle Obama. And to address the most significant event of this weekend, I love her bangs!” - Telegraph

The First Lady just met with Inaugural citizen co-chair David Hall ahead of #MLKDay of Service: 2013pic.org/servicetwitter.com/FLOTUS/status/…

— FLOTUS (@FLOTUS) January 17, 2013

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Society

"Splendid" Colonialism? Time To Change How We Talk About Fashion And Culture

A lavish book to celebrate Cartagena, Colombia's most prized travel destination, will perpetuate clichéd views of a city inextricably linked with European exploitation.

Photo of women in traditional clothes at a market in Cartagena, Colombia

At a market iIn Cartagena, Colombia

Vanessa Rosales

-Analysis-

BOGOTÁ — The Colombian designer Johanna Ortiz is celebrating the historic port of Cartagena de Indias, in Colombia, in a new book, Cartagena Grace, published by Assouline. The European publisher specializes in luxury art and travel books, or those weighty, costly coffee table books filled with dreamy pictures. If you never opened the book, you could still admire it as a beautiful object in a lobby or on a center table.

Ortiz produced the book in collaboration with Lauren Santo Domingo, an American model (née Davis, in Connecticut) who married into one of Colombia's wealthiest families. Assouline is promoting it as a celebration of the city's "colonial splendor, Caribbean soul and unfaltering pride," while the Bogotá weekly Semana has welcomed an international publisher's focus on one of the country's emblematic cities and tourist spots.

And yet, use of terms like colonial "splendor" is not just inappropriate, but unacceptable.

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