As a committed Latter-day Saint and Brigham Young University professor, I and others disagree with whatever Vice President Dick Cheney will say at this Thursday’s commencement (emphasis added).
While I didn’t get a chance to listen to the Cheney’s speach, I read it. Here are some of the things that Woodworth disagrees with:
- But this day belongs to the fine young men and women who’ve actually earned their degrees.
- There is also a great spirit to BYU, and this University will always be part of you. We had a glimpse of the character of BYU again last Friday, when this campus held a candlelight vigil to remember the victims of the tragedy at Virginia Tech. More than a place of learning, BYU is a community of faith, and kindness, and compassion.
- Above all, you’ll carry the distinction of earning a degree from BYU — a place with impressive alumni throughout this nation and far beyond. The values of this school have been a guide to generations. BYU alumni are men and women at home in the world — working and achieving, and reflecting great credit on this University and on the LDS church.
- Setting a plan for your life can be a good thing — it keeps you focused on the future, and gives you a standard for measuring your progress. Yet I would guess that 10 years from now, many of you will find yourselves following a very different course, all because of an opportunity that came out of the blue.
- You, too, may face some disappointing turns of your own — times when you fall short, knowing you could have done better. And when that happens, don’t give up or let your doubts get the best of you.
- gratitude, in general, is a good habit to get into. It is usually a correct appraisal of our situation. Most of us are able to succeed and to rise in the world because someone helped out along the way — whether it was a memorable teacher, or a boss who handed us a great opportunity, or the person who took a chance and gave us the first big break in our career. A grateful heart is an honest understanding of all that we have been given, and all that is expected in return.
Wow, I would have hated to disagree with any of that. Disagreeing with some of it could and probably should lead to disciplinary action by the University.