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The Curious Incident of the Dog At The Inauguration

January 20, 2017

Detective Gregory: “Is there any other point to which you would wish to draw my attention?”

Sherlock Holmes: “To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.”

Gregory: “The dog did nothing in the night-time.”

Holmes: “That was the curious incident.”

Something remarkable happened today. Something we would call unprecedented, if it hadn’t happened dozens of times before. This morning, there was a man who literally had the power of life and death. At his command, he could launch armies, the likes of which the world has never seen. He had the power to overrule the law, absolving people of any and all crimes. He literally had the power to order the deaths of individual American citizens. He also controlled the most powerful nation on earth. Billions hung on his every word. His every whim was taken care of by a host of attendants.

This afternoon, that man has none of that power. He cannot command even a single soldier. His words no longer cause nations to tremble. He no longer has a driver, or any government supplied servants, except men to guard him.

If this were Iraq or Libya, we’d say that the leader had been deposed.

Instead, this is America, where without so much as a harsh word, the most powerful person in the world peacefully handed over all that power to a man with whom he disagreed. He empowered a man that many (including the outgoing leader) thought unfit, even dangerous, to hold those reins of power.

The American president weilds power unlike anything the world has ever seen. And yet, every 4 or 8 years, even when the campaign for president has been strained, the actual transfer happens smoothly and peacefully. Given the history of the world, it is truly a remarkable or “curious” incident.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren. 

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