Presidents Kennedy and Obama were both men who changed the world when they become won the Presidency. While these men are quite similar, they are also very different. Their voices in the inaugural addresses that they both delivered are very influential. There are four factors to consider in comparing and contrasting the inaugural address of both presidents. The aforementioned factors include historical perspective, manner of presentation, content, and as well as influence to the people and existing conditions.
The first point is the comparison and contrast of both speeches in accordance with historical perspective. Simply put, the inaugural address of each government leader is influenced by historical factors at the time it was delivered before the public. In case of John F. Kennedy, the speech was given when the country just won the Second World War via brave spirits of American fighters who redeemed freedom through death and agony because of the bloodshed. On the other hand, Barack Obama delivered his speech amidst economic crisis that the country is facing with hopes of getting over it.
In the first, the country is beset with economic problems that caused tremendous trials and difficulties. That is the reason why the tenor of Kennedy’s speech is focused on world unity against tyranny while the speech of Obama is geared more on economic progress within the country. The second point of this paper focuses more on the manner of presentation of both inaugural addresses. They both had different focus. In the speech, Kennedy focused on announcing his foreign policy agenda to different nations. While Obama put forward different and concrete measures in view of different existing problem.
On the other hand, it was Kennedy who stressed that people should not think on what the government could do to the people but what the people could contribute to the country (Eidenmuller, 2001, p. 1). The content of the inaugural speeches of both Presidents is the third point to be discussed in this paper. As heirs of the first revolution, Kennedy mentioned that Americans are willing to pay whatever it may be, just to advance the interest of liberty and freedom (Eidenmuller, 2001, p. 1). On the other hand, Obama mentioned that the country cannot flourish long once it gives special treatment only the prosperous (Phillips, 2009, p. ). Lastly, both speeches are influential and delivered in accordance with existing conditions of time. President John F. Kennedy is aware of the effects of war and tyranny which posed threat to the nation prior to his rise to power. His speech is focused on the way every American give example to other citizens of the world that doing the right thing is better than sowing hatred and inhumane values. The speech of President Barack Obama, he is more concerned of the economy and of eliminating government programs that does not work for the benefit of the people.
Finally, both speeches deserve to be remembered even up to this time, and the generation to come because their words are product of raw realizations and commitment to serve the American nation with honor and gratitude.
Eidenmuller, Michael E. “John F. Kennedy: Inaugural Address”. 2001. American Rhetoric. Retrieved July 11, 2009 www. bartleby. com/124/pres56. html Phillips, Macon. “President Barack Obama’s Inaugural Address”. 21 January 2009 < http://www. whitehouse. gov/blog/inaugural-address/. >