The crowds were smaller than those at inaugural celebrations that preceded, but President Donald Trump has guaranteed the date of his inauguration will never be forgotten.
On Monday, Trump signed an executive order retroactively naming his inauguration on Jan. 20, 2017, as the “National Day of Patriotic Devotion,” the Washington Post reported.
The order was published on Jan. 20, though it wasn’t filed until days later:
The day cannot be celebrated, however, even if he wins reelection. That’s because the president can’t create annual federal holidays without congressional approval. Presidents can, however, declare one-time days of observance through executive order, though those are usually made in advance.
Former President George W. Bush, for example, declared June 11 a national day of mourning, marking Ronald Reagan’s funeral service. The order shut down the federal government for a day.
But in naming a day that has already passed, Trump effectively ensured the National Day of Patriotic Devotion will never be observed.
The full text appears below:
A new national pride stirs the American soul and inspires the American heart. We are one people, united by a common destiny and a shared purpose.
Freedom is the birthright of all Americans, and to preserve that freedom we must maintain faith in our sacred values and heritage.
Our Constitution is written on parchment, but it lives in the hearts of the American people. There is no freedom where the people do not believe in it; no law where the people do not follow it; and no peace where the people do not pray for it.
There are no greater people than the American citizenry, and as long as we believe in ourselves, and our country, there is nothing we cannot accomplish.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim January 20, 2017, as National Day of Patriotic Devotion, in order to strengthen our bonds to each other and to our country—and to renew the duties of Government to the people.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twentieth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-first.
Since news broke Monday of the order, the president has also received comparison to another world leader: NorthKorea’s Kim Jong-un.
In a 2015 appearance at a military parade, Kim delivered an address thanking the armed services who, “in hearty response to the party’s appeal, have worked with patriotic devotion and created one heroic miracle after another,” he said.
The similarity didn’t go unnoticed on Twitter either, where users skewered the president for pilfering words – something other members of his family have apparently done, too:
“This hence is a National Day
Of Loving the US of A,”
Said Trump by decree
In what many see
As rather a Kim-Jong-Un way.
— Limericking (@Limericking) January 24, 2017
Kim Jong Un made the day he came to power a national holiday called the National Day of Patriotic Devotion. Crazy! Oh wait, Trump did that.
— Betty F*ckin’ White (@BettyFckinWhite) January 24, 2017
— Jenni Dinger (@jendinger) January 24, 2017
Who declared Jan 20 a “National Day of Patriotic Devotion”?
A. Donald Trump
B. Kim Jong Un
C. Adolf Hitler
D. Don Jong Trumpler
— Adam Heath Avitable (@avitable) January 24, 2017