May. 3rd, 2014

cinema_babe: (Jersey Strong)
So this is going on at the old alma mater. I was making a post to FB but it go too long so I'm putting it here so I won't forget.

I see the issue with Dr Rice as indicative of some other issues. First, I've always wondered why the university doesn't solicit suggestions from the graduating students as to who they might like to see as a speaker (if they do, I certainly did see it done prior to either my undergrad or MA ceremony).

I think the administration was insane to *not* anticipate that there would be pitched protests against any member of the Bush administration cabinet to campus. This is an administration that still inspires very strong options on both sides of the political aisle. As Dr Rice said so eloquently, in her declination, commencement is a day to celebration, not controversy and bad feelings. It is not a day for a particularly controversial speakers (especially one who is commanding a $35K fee).

The real disgrace here is how tin the ear of whoever made the decision to ask Dr Rice to speak at commencement. It put her in an awkward situation. While I's sure she is quite used to being booed and protested, this is an entirely different case. It caused an unnecessary upset at a time when students should be reveling in their achievements.

Lover or hate her politics, I appreciate the sentiment that she expressed that she felt that she had become a distraction and did not wish to take away from the joy and excitement that is commencement. I shudder to think how many speakers would have just showed up anyway.

Everyday is a freaking party.

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