President Biden emphasized the need for unity in the United States during his inaugural concert remarks in front of the Lincoln Memorial on Wednesday.
Hours after taking the oath of office and delivering his inaugural address, Biden shared a similar message to the one he made earlier in the day.
“This is a great nation,” he said. “We’re good people, and overcoming the challenges in front of us requires the most elusive of all things in a democracy — unity.”
Biden added, “America’s story depends not on any one of us, not on some of us, but on all of us — on we the people.”
The president also reflected on times of crisis in the country’s past, drawing a comparison to the present day.
“There are moments in our history when more is asked of us as Americans,” said Biden. “We saw that in the Civil War. We saw that with Dr. King dreaming from these steps across the mall. We are in one of those moments now — the pandemic, economic crisis, racial injustice, the climate crisis, and threats to our very democracy. The question is, are we up to it?”
Inauguration days are typically concluded with an inaugural ball, but, in light of the pandemic, the president decided to hold a virtual concert instead. Biden reflected that he and the vice president “wanted to make sure our inauguration was not about us but about you, the American people.”
“I’ve never been more optimistic about America than I am this very day,” he said, concluding, “I will give my all to you. May God bless America, and may God protect our troops.”
Also on the concert stage was host Tom Hanks, as well as Bon Jovi and Bruce Springsteen.