The proceedings were tolerable. It was great to hear Aretha Franklin live, a bit less thrilling to listen to Rick Warren live. I liked the fact that President Obama avoided soaring rhetoric for his speech, but spelled out very clearly some policies that were going to change. I was even able to see him clearly on the jumbotron as he delivered the speech, when the doofus in front of me stopped rocking his head to the right.
Security arrangements for the hoi polloi left something to be desired (I understand it was even worse for the ticketed non-VIPS). The throng followed the path of least resistance with striking amiability (except for me--it was a good day, but I have an image to maintain), particularly given the lack of direction from crowd control authorities. Apparently no individual was given the authority to say anything except "no." Absurdly, a National Guardsman attempted to tell a horde of tens of thousands that had managed to find one of the few exits off the Mall that they were not allowed to walk on Indendence Avenue, but had to stay on the sidewalks. They also excelled at creating unnecessary chokepoints.
The complaints are minor though, against the experience of being there, among that crowd, for such an amazing day.