Just yesterday the current president of the United States, Barack Obama, delivered his annual SOTU, also known as Some Oration That’s Uplifting, due to the fact that there’s so much hope and pride given in these speeches, it can’t be helped that they tend to raise spirits. Other folks, however, may refer to this as the State of The Union address. This oration, given typically at the end of January, basically gives a layout of the president’s future goals, as well as the accomplishments made. These speeches have been made since Washington, and it’s really a bit odd to see how times have changed.
Education is important. When does a day go by when we are not told this? Talk about redundancy. It’s also shown many times in different SOTU addresses, such as Theodore Roosevelt’s eighth address, where he dedicates four paragraphs in itself to education, stating that “The share that the National Government should take in the broad work of education has not received the attention and the care it rightly deserves.” Obama, more than 100 years later, preaches the same thing. “Research shows that one of the best investments we can make in a child’s life is high-quality early education.” It really makes a point of how much we stress education nowadays. Even Roosevelt didn’t mention educational goals as high as Obama, which shows how people’s ideas about the future are changing. Washington didn’t mention education at all in his fourth address, but he did talk a lot about Native Americans. Today I think we’ll find it’s rather the other way around.
All SOTU addresses will be very blatantly different from each other due to the fact that they mainly cover the current events and future goals for that time era. You can find repeating themes throughout each of the speeches, but for the most part, the specialized goals are different. Not just to focus about the content of the speeches, but rather the way they were written. Washington, as usual, was very formal in his way of presenting his information. There is no reference to the people. What is said is simply the facts, and those alone. Even Kennedy, fifty years ago, did less appealing to the individual, but in place he did more motivating. “For we seek not the worldwide victory of one nation or system but a worldwide victory of man.” His outlook was the big picture; the VERY BIG picture. In truth, Obama takes the alternate route. He has numerous attempts to target individuals, especially shown in his opening, where he talks about a single teacher, entrepreneur, farmer, mother, father, and just your ol’ average Joe taking the bus home. The way they try to reach out to the people are different. Of course though, all methods must be tested to see which are the most effective.
In all honesty, the Some Oration That’s Uplifting, address for 2014 made by Obama was far more interesting than I would like to admit. He pointed out the right topics for the future and made his statements clear and concise, however I think his stylistic choice of presenting the speech with the main theme of the “common man” could have been altered a bit to be more inspiring. All SOTU addresses will have degrees of variability due to the fact that the speakers are different people (unless given by the same president, of course) with different outlooks on problems and life itself. They will be looking towards very different or maybe even very similar near futures. Hopefully, by now, you know what SOTU stands for.
Public Domain picture of Washington’s painting looking over audience members for the SOTU