NGSC Sports

Sammy Sportface: Commencement Address to Class of 2017

Commencement Address to College Graduates of the Class of 2017

To all college students graduating this year, I want to tell you the truth. The adult world needs you. We have so many problems to solve and we’re not getting this done ourselves. We need fresh ideas, new approaches, better attitudes, youthful exuberance, less cynicism. We need people hauling less baggage. We need nicer people with less selfish agendas who don’t think they know it all. No one does.

We need you to fix what we haven’t been able to. We need you to figure out a way to get people to stop being mean to each other, hurting each other, being jealous of each other, undermining each other, ignoring each other, and back-stabbing each other. We need you get the interpersonal hurting – which makes life so unpleasant if it happens to you — to end. This hurt has been tearing us up emotionally and psychologically for so long.

Help us figure out a way to get people to be kinder to each other, less suspicious of our individual agendas. Get us to realize the importance of saying please and thank because it’s respectful and decent human behavior. We need you to make being nice and polite come back in vogue. It should not be a sign of a person’s weakness.

We need to you to figure out a way to cure diseases such as pancreatic cancer. When a person gets diagnosed with this disease, it is very often a death sentence within a few months or years. Right now pancreatic cancer is one of the world’s most deadly diseases. It needs to stop being this dire situation. We need you to fix this problem and all other forms of cancer because this continues to be an insidious disease that destroys so many lives, families, and friendships.

We need you to figure out how to stop terrorism. We need you to disentangle and obliterate from every human being’s mind this notion that people can decide they are called by their religious ideology to kill a group of people who do not agree with their beliefs. This is utter madness.

The people committing acts of terrorism continue to make this world a very scary place, every day, all over the world. No matter who we are, no matter where live, terrorism haunts everybody. Feeling haunted is no way for any of us to live. It’s not happiness. It’s not fulfillment. It’s being scared and worried and anxious and wary. It makes us want to get revenge.

The way the situation now stands, terrorists won’t stop killing people. They don’t care if they die in the process. They think this is honorable. That’s right, honorable. They are so twisted that they believe committing suicide to kill mass numbers of innocent people is justified, a moral obligation, a reason to celebrate and be proud of what they’ve done.

We need you to get these people to stop thinking this way. The adult world hasn’t figured out to stop this mental madness. Bereft of ideas and solution, we realize this nightmarish problem is unlikely to end anytime soon – it could go on for centuries — without some fresh ideas and smart actions. This is why we need new thinking, the openness, and optimism of youthful minds, to help us end this ongoing real-life horror show. Bring us new ideas. Attack at the problem from a different vantage point. Create for us a strategy to eradicate terrorism.

We need you to help us stop all types of abusive and self-destructive behavior. Give us ideas for how married couples can stay married for life and stop getting divorced so often. Help us figure out how to stop the mental and physical abuse that runs rampant in family households. We need ideas from you on how to calm everything down within the home, to get mothers and fathers and their children to understand each other better, to communicate with candor and wisdom and courage about what they feel, how they think, and how they can understand each other better so they will stop fighting, getting divorced, siding with one parent over the other, running away from home, being told to leave home, and being deceptive and manipulative in their actions towards each other.

The family system is under siege, enduring too-frequent stress and, and in constant discord; in many cases, it’s fractured. We need you to repair this damage. A secure and well-functioning family is likely to be a key to the survival of our society. Without it, chaos will continue to fester.

We need you to cheer us up. The adult world is, in far too many places and situations, not a happy nor fulfilling place. There is widespread negativity, despair, hopelessness, selfishness, greed, and real worries on a daily basis that something is terribly wrong with our world. None of us knows what to do about it. We try to. We think of solutions. But for the most part, we still live in a world filled with too much distrust, deep concerns about our future including yours. We feel bad about the lack of success in trying to make things better for you. We know this is only going to make your lives more arduous, less prosperous, and more dangerous.

We need your optimism. We need you to make us believe things will get better because you are on your way to change the world for the better because you believe you can because you are young and haven’t experience enough heartache and nastiness to be too cynical to believe things can’t be improved. We are too stained, too hurt, have seen too many bad things, have been rejected one too many times, have experienced injustice and unfairness and deceit and been lied to. You haven’t, as much, and that’s what gives us hope that you can help us accomplish what we couldn’t.

We need you to think big and act big and succeed in the most profound ways. We need you to solve the global warming problem, end miscarriages of babies, eradicate poverty and racism, stop natural disasters from ruining cities, states, and countries, halt the political hatred between political parties, get people to get along in peace, and give them hope that the future will be better than the past. We need you to help us feel better about ourselves, more self-assured, less uneasy, more fulfilled.

We are asking a lot of you. We realize you are young with less experienced than so many of us flawed adults. We try hard and mean well and are mostly good people, but deep down we know we have been flummoxed about how to make the world a better place for you as you grow up and take over the world.

The truth is we are not solving these problems that are ripping our society apart. We haven’t figured these things out despite many of us having lots of education and experience and worldliness. We have tried. There have been some successes. But mostly we have failed. Our efforts are not producing good results. And we know it. And you are going to pay for our inadequacies. You are going to have to clean up the mess we have made.

We need you to show us the way to a better future for all of us.

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Sammy Sportface
Possibly America’s best sports blogger. Sometimes relevant and insightful. Often funny and satirical. Mostly mysterious and unpredictable. Only mildly interested in the truth.

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