Let me preface this–let me preface the hell out of this–by saying that I wouldn’t have wanted to go to my commencement ceremony tomorrow anyway. To me they’re drawn-out, highly-generalized celebrations of impersonality guised as something meaningful. But the speaker MSU has chosen for this year’s ceremony has resealed the deal that has already been sealed. Regardless of personal opinion, dragging out a figurehead of the Bush administration during a highly-polarized period in foreign affairs is tacky and tactless, and should induce the gag reflex in just about anyone. A person’s commencement should not be a forum for political discussion.
Condoleezza Rice may well be an inspiring orator, a great person, and a good lay for all I know, but we’re talking about her as a political symbol. It’s inescapable right now. She’s a prominent assistant for Bush on national security affairs, making her selection understandable when you consider MSU President McPherson’s work in Iraq. McPherson’s job was to rebuild Iraq’s economic structure, which he apparently forgot to do, and now he’s offering MSU students a piece of some of that Bush administration action. In a dramatic coincidence, there’s also an election in six months. I don’t think Condoleezza Rice cares whether or not I’ve graduated anymore than the next commencement speaker, but sullying the ceremony with current affairs politics makes the entire process all the more insincere. Obviously Condoleezza Rice won’t actually discuss foreign affairs–dear God, I hope not–but again, this is about her image as a political symbol. Because without that image, nobody would know who she was, and she sure as hell wouldn’t be speaking at commencement.
I don’t like politics, and I’m sure nobody reading this wants to hear me talk about them, but I really, really like arguing, so here we go: I’m not voting for Bush. It’s not because he’s stupid, which he probably isn’t, it’s because the actions he takes on social issues–which is every issue–are overwhelmingly informed by a particular structure of morality. Not necessarily an incorrect structure, but a specific one. That’s problematic. All politicians have their morals, obviously, which is fine and dandy, but some politicians impose them onto their constituents more often than others. That’s divisive. It’s controlling. In politics it leads to decisions based on prejudiced gut-instinct. Our President should not attempt to be our moral leader. But the language of Bush favors such moral-sounding words as good, bad, right, wrong, justice, and evil, as in the “axis of evil,” which would be a good name for a band but is a horrible thing to ever come out of a President’s mouth.
Like, what the fuck is evil? Seriously, on what chromosome is the gene for fucking evil? Is it a recessive trait, or dominant or what? I mean, I took biological psychology, but I don’t remember–oh dear fuck. I don’t want political decisions to be made by these ideological hallucinations, by a President capable of convincingly summarizing complex foreign affairs issues into a game of cops and robbers, a rationality which volatizes globalization and precludes healthy relations between the US and the outside world.
I could argue about this for awhile, I truly could, and sometimes, late at night, with my teddy bear, I sometimes do. The only point I really have is, I don’t want a commencement speaker who inspires me to discuss such nonsense on this website, even if her name is really neat.