Students at the University of Notre Dame recently staged a walk out protest against Vice President Mike Pence who was the university’s commencement speaker.
One young man interviewed about the protest looked squarely into the camera and said, “Commencement is about us. It’s not about national politics. This is a distraction.”
Well, this is a profound misunderstanding of the commencement ceremony and it’s also a reflection of the incredible narcissism that seems now to affect so many at various age levels in American society.
The commencement is actually a celebration of learning and the dignity of education. It’s about achievement, yes, but it’s also about promise. It’s about obligation and responsibility on the part of the graduates even as they depart the campus of the university or other institutions of higher education and pursue their callings in life.
But that statement, “It’s about us,” when it comes to commencement is very revealing. It tells us a great deal about a fundamental moral shift that has taken place in this country.[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/325385107″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]