Bush Mentions Holy Qur’an in Inaugural Speech Washington, DC:

President George W. Bush took the opportunity of his second inaugural address to promote the ideals of human freedom and democracy to an international audience.

President Bush relied heavily on symbols of faith during the inaugural ceremony. Four years ago, the invocation was delivered by Franklin Graham, who later called Islam a "wicked and violent" religion. On this turn, the President enlisted the talents of Rev. Luis Leon, who provided an interfaith message of mutual respect and harmony among all faiths. President Bush referred to the Torah, Bible, and Qur'an in his speech when alluding to the need for building character in ourselves and our societies. He also warned against bigotry in America: "And our country must abandon all the habits of racism because we cannot carry the message of freedom and the baggage of bigotry at the same time."

This is the responsibility not only of our government, but of all American citizens who care for the future of our country and the world. In presenting his sweeping vision for America's role in the world, the President outlined two central goals: spreading democracy and ending tyranny. In this regard, he recognized the need for self-determination for all people: "And when the soul of a nation finally speaks, the institutions that arise may reflect customs and traditions very different from our own. America will not impose our own style of government on the unwilling. Our goal instead is to help others find their own voice, attain their own freedom, and make their own way."


Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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