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News off-base with editorial for graduates

We were amused by the editorial in Thursday’s News, beginning “Dear 2020 graduates.” Lamenting the COVID-19-denied “ceremony, celebration, hugs, and parties,” as if such amusements were a seminal part of education. (Pro tip to The News: in the first graph, the phrase after the em dash should be “is an important milestone,” not “are…” The subject is “graduation.”).

That a graduation ceremony with or without hugs and a party is “an important milestone in the life of any young woman or young man” is just silly. One graduates from high school or (here) community college and moves on, whether to more education or work or whatever. Commencements do not “help us feel not just that … we have actually transitioned from children to adults.” What does that is accomplishment, not a gin-soaked evening in the football stadium wearing a mortarboard.

One recalls another editorial, arguing that the AHS homecoming parade would be “some of the best times” of the students’ lives. One imagines the students 40 years on, reflecting, and realizing it has all been downhill after the glee club float passed. One imagines inconsolable bitterness and disappointment. Our old school, indeed.

Space is limited. To suggest that prospective graduates need to be reminded that the virus-caused lockdown “cannot take away the knowledge you’ve gained, the skills you’ve developed, the relationships you’ve built, the friends you’ve made” is to paint said graduates as emotionally fragile, in need on constant reinforcement. Hardly “transitioning to adult.”

Concluding, the most laughable line, that this is “a generation made in fire, in trial and tribulation, perhaps the next Greatest Generation.” There’s been no world war, no Great Depression (not yet). One imagines men and women sitting around the VFW, reading this editorial, and screaming “WTF?” You’re not the only ones.

CLYDE SHUMAN,

Ossineke

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