Washington, Jan.19 (ANI): Addressing a huge crowd of proud Americans from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial here on Sunday, two days before he is to take oath as the 44th President of the United States, President-elect Barack Obama called on the people of the country to show their resilience and overcome all obstacles coming in the way of change.
Obama called for a new spirit of national sacrifice to overcome war and economic crisis, even as a star-studded concert marked the official start of festivities leading up to his inauguration on Tuesday as America's first black president.
"In the course of our history, only a handful of generations have been asked to confront challenges as serious as the ones we face right now. Our nation is at war. Our economy is in crisis. I won't pretend that meeting any one of these challenges will be easy. It will take more than a month or a year, and it will likely take many," Obama said.
"But never forget that the true character of our nation is revealed not during times of comfort and ease, but by the right we do when the moment is hard. I ask you to help me reveal that character once more, and together, we can carry forward as one nation, and one people, the legacy of our forefathers that we celebrate today," he added.
Obama said what gave him the greatest hope was "not the stone and marble that surrounds us today, but what fills the spaces in between". It is you, Americans of every race and region and station who came here because you believe in what this country can be and because you want to help us get there," he said.
"As I prepare to assume the presidency, yours are the voices I will take with me every day I walk into that Oval Office," he said, adding "The voices of men and women who have different stories but hold common hopes; who ask only for what was promised us as Americans - that we might make of our lives what we will and see our children climb higher than we did." (ANI)