Let freedom ring! Inauguration photo journal


Dixie Collegiate Editor-in-Chief James Niiler and Contributor Gerald Fraas traveled to Washington, DC to witness the historic inauguration of President Donald Trump. Niiler’s selected photos and commentary follow below.


  • Beautiful but chilly weather in Washington, DC. Thousands of people milling around – vendors are everywhere. Protestors are here and there: an old Marxist who apparently survived the McCarthy years; some smiling cat ladies wearing pink. The general atmosphere is peaceful and exciting, for both Trump supporters and foes alike.
  • We arrive at the National Mall for Trump’s pre-inaugural concert. Martial music is playing when we do. Happily, degenerate celebrities are absent, allowing the concert to be both family-friendly and patriotic. Sadly, Kanye West – recently released from Soviet-style confinement due to ‘psychological abnormalities’ – doesn’t perform. But the Piano Guys do. So does Lee Greenwood, with whom the crowd joins in singing “God Bless the USA.” Sam Moore sings a beautiful rendition of “America the Beautiful,” and the legendary Toby Keith hits it out of the park.
  • At the conclusion of the performance, Trump addresses the crowd. Fireworks explode over the Lincoln Memorial while the “Battle Hymn of the Republic” plays. The Trumps pay homage to Abraham Lincoln, pausing in front of his statue. Can you imagine something like this happening during the Obama years? Because I sure can’t.


  • We awake around 4:30 a.m. at the Leadership Institute dorm in Arlington. It’s time to catch our metro to the Mall, once again. We’ve thankfully been granted tickets in the orange viewing zone, but it’s nonetheless important we get there early.
  • We catch a bite to eat at Union Station. On the way to the Mall, the Leftist concept of ‘intersectionality’ comes into play, as pro-Palestinian communists are blocking a street by chanting, dancing in circles, etc. Fundamentalist Protestants wander around with signs and bullhorns, warning of the Antichrist Pope and eternal damnation. God bless America.
  • We are waved through security, and wait for a couple of hours for the ceremonies to begin. CNN’s temporary reporting studio is perched like a buzzard atop a nearby building. The crowd, despite claims to the contrary, is massive, stretching at least back to the Washington Monument. Obama’s 2008 crowd was larger, only because the event was in the backyard of DC’s wealthy, white, liberal government employees. Also, most of Trump’s supporters don’t have the luxury to travel for a weekend in the middle of winter.
  • As the fateful hour approaches, music begins: first military bands, and then choirs. The Choir of the National Cathedral first sings “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee,” and then several hymns, setting the religious tone for the rest of the ceremony.
  • Dignitaries and former Presidents are introduced to the assembly. The crowd claps and cheers for the liberal Jimmy Carter; the neoconservative Bushes; President Obama and Michelle; and even Bernie Sanders, whose face is shown on the Jumbotron screen. But when the Clintons are introduced, booing and derision follow. Chants of ‘Lock her up!’ emanate from the crowd. (Yours Truly may or may not have participated in such a chant.) When Bill decides to ogle Melania, he is appropriately labelled a ‘PERV!’ Clinton is appropriately booed every time her face appears on the screen thereafter.
  • Melania Trump comes forward with an escort to great cheers, all while exuding incredible grace and dignity. Trump himself makes his entrance, and the crowd goes wild.
  • The first round of religious prelates prays: Cardinal Dolan from New York reads King Solomon’s prayer from the Book of Wisdom. Rev. Samuel Rodriguez reads the Beatitudes from Matthew’s Gospel (“Blessed are you when others persecute you and speak falsehoods about you” seems to be directed at CNN). Evangelical pastor Paula Cain-White gives a stirring prayer, thanking God for America as a gift to our people and to the world.
  • Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer is to give a unifying speech to celebrate the transition of power. Instead, he lapses into schoolmarmish, obnoxious, elitist and incredibly condescending drivel. Whereupon the crowd boos him, time and time and time again, punctuated with cries of ‘WE WANT TRUMP!’ President Obama looks pained, as does the President-elect, probably upset his followers are misbehaving. Has something like this ever happened during an Inauguration before? Somehow I doubt it.
  • The heroic Clarence Thomas swears in Mike Pence, and then, at noon, Donald Trump takes the Inaugural Oath. The forty-fifth President of the United States is presented to the world, as a twenty-one cannon salute booms and the Marine Band strikes up “Hail to the Chief.”
  • President Trump gives a powerful, civic nationalist Inaugural Address with surprisingly religious overtones, all while firing shots at the Bushes and the Obamas.
  • The moment Trump begins his speech, a very gentle rain begins to fall, dying away within fifteen minutes. The Rev. Franklin Graham notices this, and declares it to be a sign from God. Cheers erupt.


  • It’s now about 1 p.m., and the Inaugural Parade begins at 3. We make haste from the Capitol, plunging into the congested streets of downtown Washington. We stop by numerous vendors, who offer somewhat tacky and overpriced goods.
  • We duck into a fine souvenir shop, but not before noticing ‘antifascist’ street thugs parading by like a troupe of ISIS fighters. Smashed windows lie in their wake.
  • It’s now about 3, and as we don’t have official tickets to the parade, we wait in a massive line to enter the public viewing area. But it’s fine, as the parade route is delayed due to protestors.
  • When we finally arrive at Pennsylvania Avenue – across the street from the Trump International Hotel, I might add – we hear popping sounds coming from a few blocks behind us, and smoke billowing up. UH-OH…
  • Thank God, it’s just Larry King’s limo.
  • The parade, as expected, is magnificent. Military bands, pipe-and-drum corps, and the President’s suite pass by. It’s well-nigh impossible to get a picture of the new President, however.
  • Alabama’s own Talladega College Band has been attacked for performing for a ‘racist,’ but kudos to them for persevering in the face of Leftist hatred. They do an incredible job.
  • It’s now about 6 p.m., and bands and entourages from every corner of America have been on parade. The day isn’t yet over, but by far it has been the most memorable in my life, and the lives of millions of others.


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