Posts Tagged ‘Honorary Degree’

The Arizona State University is  being granted the honor of having Barack Obama, the president of the United States, give its commencement address, and has decided not to award President Obama an honorary degree, as is the tradition for graduation day speakers.

ASU Media Relations Director Sharon Keeler says, unlike other universities, the processes for selecting commencement speakers and honorary degree recipients are independent. She says that honorary degrees are given “for an achievement of eminence” and that Obama was not considered for an honorary degree because his body of achievements, at this time, does not fit within that criteria.

So are we to understand that getting elected president of the United States, not to mention the first African-American president, is NOT “an achievement of eminence”.

Are you kidding ASU?

After all, as the Phoenix-area’s East Valley Tribune editorialized:

Barry Goldwater received his honorary degree in May 1961, three years before his Republican nomination for president and only eight years into his three decades as a U.S. senator. Sandra Day O’Connor was similarly recognized just three years in her 25 years on the U.S. Supreme Court.

This just smells bad. Especially mixed in with the garbage from two decades ago, when Arizona refused to recognize Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a federal holiday. Put’s me in mind of that annoying garbage bag commercial:



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