Commencement Addresses: More Like Auditions for the Anti-Trump Resistance
'The Ingraham Angle' calls out these highly partisan words to America's graduates for exactly what they are
“It’s that time of year when commencement speakers attempt desperately to impart words of wisdom and inspiration to graduating seniors,” said Fox News host Laura Ingraham Monday night on “The Ingraham Angle.”
“This weekend some of the addresses — they were so original, so unique, so groundbreaking. Others seemed to be auditioning for, I don’t know, the leader of the anti-Trump resistance,” she said.
She was referring to the dozens of commencement speeches delivered over the weekend at colleges nationwide that were anything but inspirational — but were, instead, blatantly partisan and political. A few examples were the addresses delivered by CNN journalist Jake Tapper at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, Massachusetts; by political activist Amal Clooney (married to George Clooney) at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee; and by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg at Rice University in Houston, Texas.
No surprise here: The trio all shared bleak outlooks for the country, when almost certainly these graduating college kids would have preferred to hear smart, uplifting and sage advice.
During his speech, Tapper implied his profession is being threatened in 2018.
"We're in a moment where humanity and decency are being eroded, where basic systems of law are under attack," he said, "and where the very notion of empirical fact is being attacked and corroded."
Bloomberg's comments took these same ideas a step further — with an outlandish comparison.
"The greatest threat to American democracy isn't communism or jihadism or any external foreign force or power," declared Bloomberg. "It is our own willingness to tolerate dishonesty in a party in our pursuit of power."
Yes, Bloomberg actually said that. He added that "dishonest politicians" have "a chorus of enablers who defend their every lie."
Clooney, in her speech, seemed to conflate U.S. national security with intolerance.
"It's a time where our politicians try to conflate the terms 'refugee' and 'terrorist' and make us fear one another," she said. "We need courage."
With all of this virtue-signaling going on, Ingraham — like many others across the country — was not impressed.
"You've got to come up with something original."
"Oh, come on," she said. "If these oracles are leading graduates into the future, I hope they all have Google maps on their phones. You've got to come up with something original."
Of course colleges are pursuing left-of-center speakers like the three noted above — speakers who take direct or indirect shots at President Donald Trump, his administration, and his policies. With liberal and progressive ideas so widely accepted — and pushed — on campuses throughout the United States, it's no wonder these left-leaning institutions rarely invite or allow conservatives to speak freely on campus without ostracism.
Tom Joyce is a freelance writer from the South Shore of Massachusetts. He covers sports, pop culture, and politics and has contributed to The Federalist, Newsday, ESPN, and other outlets.