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It’s the season of commencement ceremonies and the unavoidable controversies provoked by invited speakers. Why would 2019 be any different than previous years? The students have opinions and they want you to know about them.
The latest commencement speaker to come under fire is Vice-President Mike Pence. Pence accepted an invitation to deliver a commencement address to the graduating class of Taylor University, a small private, interdenominational, evangelical Christian college in Upland, Indiana. Pence, remember, is the former Governor of Indiana so the invitation isn’t unusual on the face of it. It does seem a little unusual that a few dozen students (out of the total 494 graduates) got up and walked out in protest as he spoke.
Taylor - University - America - Colleges - Commencement
Taylor University is one of America’s oldest evangelical Christian colleges. I assume it is not out of the ordinary that a commencement speaker would bring a religious component to the address, given it is a Christian school. Pence’s statement about Christian beliefs being under attack lately wasn’t out of the ordinary. He urged the students to stand up for their religious beliefs. The call to stand strong was very similar to the message Pence delivered to the graduates of Liberty University last weekend.
“Throughout most of our American history it’s been pretty easy to call yourself a Christian, but things are different now,” Pence said. “Lately, it’s become acceptable, even fashionable, to malign traditional Christian beliefs. So as you prepare to leave this place and build your life on a Christ-centered, world-engaging foundation poured here at Taylor University, be prepared to stand up.”
Student - Protest - Pence - Address - Effort
I have to think that the student protest of Pence’s address was an organized effort, planned well before Saturday’s ceremony. Online petitions circulated since Pence’s invitation was announced, both in favor and against that decision. Students in opposition voiced concern about Pence’s association...
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