To put it mildly, the past four years have felt like approximately 878 decades of nonsensical fuckery condensed into a nonstop marathon.
The inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won't immediately change that, of course, but damn it feels good to know a failed steak salesman will no longer be crawling around the Oval Office. Furthermore, that failed steak salesman won't have the satisfaction of being able to lay claim to the title of POTUS. He'll go down as, among other things, a single-termer with a televised toilet obsession.
The festivities—the livestream for which started up around 10 a.m. ET via the YouTube embed up top—included performances from Lady Gaga, Garth Brooks, Jennifer Lopez, and poet Amanda Gorman.
Gaga, as one should always expect in any given scenario, delivered a performance of inarguable perfection:
Prior to her performance of the National Anthem, Gaga said it was her intention to "acknowledge our past, be healing for our present, and passionate for a future where we work together lovingly." For Gaga, the moment carried "great" personal meaning.
Following Gaga was Jennifer Lopez, who performed "This Land Is Your Land."
Below, see the moments Biden and Harris took their respective oaths:
"Today, we celebrate the triumph not of a candidate but of a cause, the cause of democracy," Biden said when addressing the nation after taking his oath of office. "The will of the people has been heard and the will of the people has been heeded. We've learned again that democracy is precious, democracy is fragile. And at this hour, my friends, democracy has prevailed."
You can watch Biden's full inauguration speech below:
After Biden's extended remarks, the living legend himself—Garth Fucking Brooks—let loose some "Amazing Grace." Brooks, who also made a point to give a proper hello to Barack and Michelle Obama, was followed by the reading of a deeply moving piece by Gorman.
On the night before the inauguration, Biden presided over a touching tribute to the more than 400,000 Americans who have died due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Improving vaccine distribution, helping those who have suffered financially due to the pandemic, and boosting safety recommendations are all key elements of Biden's plans for the first 100 days of the new administration.
As announced moments before the inauguration livestream kicked off, Biden will immediately follow his oath of office by signing a combination of executive orders, directives, and more that are all aimed at providing relief for families nationwide "amid converging crises."
Peep the full list of moves, including the 100 Days Masking Challenge and plans for a reunion with the World Health Organization, right here.