Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice spoke at Boston College today and the vast majority of the students and faculty reacted very positively.
A few students turned their backs but more stood to applaud as Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice received an honorary degree and addressed graduates at Boston College on Monday.
After weeks of turmoil and anti-war protests over Rice’s invitation to address the Catholic school, Rice told graduates that their education comes with responsibilities.
She drew scattered applause when she discussed what she called a “commitment to reason,” or an obligation to test and challenge their own views.
“There is nothing wrong with holding an opinion and holding it passionately,” Rice said, “but at those times when you are absolutely sure you’re right, go find someone who disagrees.”
About 50 students stood with their backs toward the stage as Rice was introduced to give her commencement speech, but they were quickly drowned out by a standing ovation.
There is a time and a place for protesting, and the middle of Secretary Rice’s commencement address, similarly Senator John McCain’s speech at the New School, is not one of them. When I received my master’s degree, my commencement speaker was Gloria Steinem. I didn’t I agree with Gloria Steinem on anything then, and I still don’t now, but when she spoke it didn’t occur to me to do anything to disrupt her speech. To do so would have been rude.
Rich Lowery at The Corner has more on Condi’s BC appearance:
This is what someone at the event just e-mailed me about her reception at Boston College this morning. I have no first-hand knowledge, but pass along:
She got loud sustained applause when first introduced. A handful of students either turned backs or held up signs saying “not in my name.” A fair number of faculty did same, but then something happened when they awarded the degree — the students who had been sitting rose to give her a long standing ovation, along with families in alumni stadium. No students protested during the speech. A small number of faculty reprised their previous performance. Her speech has been interrupted by APPLAUSE at least five times. Speech ended to loud sustained applause and standing “O” by students and families alike.