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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat



    Obama deserving of an honorary degree

    Of course, students have the right to protest the speaker of their commencement. (“”Notre Dame students right to oppose Obama’s visit,”” April 14, 2009) It is indeed one of the most important days of a student’s life. Daily Wildcat columnists, however, should think twice about the content of their opinion pieces before submitting them for publication.

    First of all, “”hundreds”” of students protesting Obama’s speech out of the thousands at Notre Dame is really not as many as

    Laura Donovan makes it out to be. Beyond that, is quoting someone of the same last name as the columnist really a good journalistic tactic? The assertion that “”Notre Dame would be uncomfortable with a liberal presence at graduation”” is also absurd. There are plenty of Catholic liberals and many hold office. You may have heard of that little family called the Kennedys.

    The argument has nothing to do with Obama being a liberal, but specifically about his abortion stance. Moreover, is it really an insult to the UA that Obama is speaking at Arizona State University instead? Are his basketball comments really relevant to the situation? No, certainly not. Furthermore, Donovan clearly did not do her research. The quotation she produced has appeared in many publications, but there have been several explaining how ASU had no intent to snub our President but instead was instructed to keep the speech so quiet that their honorary degree committee was not told about it. Maybe this is not the whole truth, but either way ASU has publicly apologized and is honoring Obama by naming their most esteemed scholarship program after him.

    If they had decided to give him an honorary degree, Donovan’s assertion that it would be “”unearned”” is ridiculous. Was Barry Goldwater more deserving of the honorary degree ASU gave him after a solo term in the Senate? Do the other recipients deserve the traditionally awarded honorary degree over a man who has worked organizing communities, teaching constitutional law, serving in the U.S. senate and is now the first African-American president of the United States?

    You may not like it, Laura Donovan, but the man deserves an honorary degree, but I think the scholarship program will suffice.

    -Emily Sanschagrin, geography senior

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