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Why Things Matter

Sometimes I'm tempted to discount ritual. To think of the familiar repetitions of ceremony as rote and empty. But I noticed something as I watched Biden's inauguration. I felt a profound relief that the ceremony meant something to so many people. So many of us watched Kamala Harris make history. We listened to Biden quote St. Augustine. We were made speechless by Amanda Gorman's inaugural poem. We took in the colors, the music, and the peculiar pride of the U.S. transfer of power. We wept with the momentousness of it all. A small catharsis. Biden isn't our savior. No one should fool themselves into thinking that. But these last four years have been a steady drum of callousness and cruelty. A nearly constant insistence from the White House that nothing and no one mattered. We were ruled by lies, greed and corruption, incompetence and arrogance, and a vile exploitation of this country's most hateful history. We were changed by these four years. Or if you haven't b

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