Of course I have a thousand opinions about the Inaugural Address. I won’t comment here. Somewhere around Obama’s fourth year in office a CEO said to me, “Leslie I know you can separate the person from the politics but I just can’t.”
What he was saying was that he could not separate his dislike of Obama from Obama the communicator.
I can separate the words from the way they govern. But it doesn’t help me because I know that it is very difficult in this divisive year to comment in any way that can be seen as neutral.
But the lessons remain the same, and the reason for studying a speaker remains the same. We can learn from these very public examples of speaking. We can learn what to do and what not to do. We can learn why something worked and why it won’t work for us mere mortals.
I had a client one time that wanted to have ‘Hail to the Chief’ play as he came in to speak. The problem was that he was not the president . . . of the United States.
I will be glad to comment privately to anyone that is curious. Meanwhile, remember the rules of communication apply to everyone AND special occasion speaking like a funeral or swearing-in or inaugural address each have special requirements the speaker must fulfill.