President Barack Obama’s Commencement Speech | Dear Class Of 2020
Obama reaches out to 2020 alumni
In his speeches, the ex-president criticized the reaction of the current US leadership to the COVID-19 pandemic
Former US President Barack Obama spoke at two virtual graduation ceremonies on Saturday. In the first case, its audience was graduates of universities and colleges, in which black students traditionally studied, and in the second, high school graduates..
Both ceremonies were broadcast live online due to quarantine restrictions due to the global coronavirus pandemic, replacing traditional graduation events..
In addition to the usual parting words inherent in such speeches, Obama criticized the current US leadership, which, as a rule, he avoided in the past..
He raised the topic of the pandemic, noting that it exposed inequalities in the United States, and criticized the reaction of US leaders to it, without mentioning President Donald Trump by name.
“You will have to grow up faster than some other generations,” the ex-president said to the graduates. “This pandemic has shaken the status quo and exposed many deep-seated problems in our country, from huge economic inequality to persistent racial inequality and a lack of basic health care for the people who need them.”.
“She has led many young people to realize that the old methods don’t work, that it doesn’t matter how much money you make if everyone around you is hungry and sick, and that our society and our democracy only work when we think beyond myself, but also about each other “, – he continued.
He added that the pandemic has “lifted the veil” from the “harsh truth” that people “must eventually realize when their childhood comes to an end.”.
“Did you think that adults are responsible for everything and understand what they are doing? It turned out that they did not have the answers to all the questions. Many of them don’t even ask the right questions. Therefore, whether the world becomes a better place depends on you, “Obama said..
He warned graduates against “doing what seems good, comfortable, easy” because “little children think so.”.
“Unfortunately, many so-called adults, including people with fashion titles and important positions, still think that way – which is why things went awry,” he said..
He expressed the hope that each graduate will instead “be based on unchanging values such as honesty, hard work, responsibility, fairness, generosity, respect for others.”.
“You will not always do everything right, you will make mistakes, as we all do. But if you listen to the truth that is within you, even when it is difficult, even when it is inconvenient, people will notice it. They will reach out to you. And you will be part of the solution, not part of the problem, ”the former president said..
Speaking to alumni of colleges where historically black students have studied, Obama said, “Let’s be honest, a disease like [COVID-19] just highlighted the existing inequalities and additional burdens that historically black communities have had to face in our country.”.
“We see this in the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on our communities, just as we see it when a black man goes for a run and some people think they can stop him and start asking him questions and then shoot him. him when he refuses to answer, “- said Obama, recalling the death of 25-year-old black Ahmad Arbury, who was shot while jogging in Georgia.
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