After choosing not to invite President Trump to give their commencement address, Notre Dame invited Vice President Mike Pence to speak to the graduating class of 2017 this May. That decision was met with a negative response from Notre Dame students, claiming that they would feel “unsafe” from the Vice President’s presence on campus.
Several students started a campaign titled #NotMyCommencementSpeaker, offering students an opportunity to voice their displeasure with the Vice President speaking on campus. Here is what Campus Reform reported:
Last week, seniors Immane Mondane and Jourdyhn Williams invited students to take photos holding white boards with “direct quotes from Pence that are racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, offensive, or ostracizing to members of our community,” along with the hashtag “#NotMyCommencementSpeaker.”
Alternatively, students could also write about why they “feel unsafe with the presence of Mike Pence on our campus,” with daily opportunities to have photos taken with their whiteboards through the week.
Mondane told Notre Dame’s student newspaper The Observer that Pence “represents the larger Trump administration,” and that “his administration represents something, and for many people on our campus, it makes them feel unsafe to have someone who openly is offensive but also demeaning of their humanity and of their life and of their identity.”
This is ridiculous. A speech by the Vice President of the United States should not make people feel unsafe because he does not agree with their progressive values. If these students have not learned how to interact with people with dissenting viewpoints throughout their tenure at Notre Dame, they are demonstrating that they will have a difficult time in the real world once they graduate. This represents the sad state of affairs of the millennial generation.