A Teacher Tells a High School Graduating Class Exactly What They Need to Hear
David McCullough Junior is an English teacher at Wellesley High School in Boston. Who cares right? Well David spoke at the graduation and decided not to sugar coat his speech. We live in a world now that you can’t tell someone they lost because it might hurt their feelings. You can’t say they are wrong because they will get upset. David doesn’t care what you think, he said it anyway…
“You’re not special.Even if your parents have told you that every day. No one’s going to hand you anything in the world. So if you want anything from this point on, you have to earn it.”
That is the truth! So many people expect handouts these days, or to get a perk for doing their job! Really, you want something extra for doing the bare minimum at your job when others work endless hours for no recognition. Nice try bud!
Here is the best part of his speech . . . I think I love this man!
“Yes you’ve been pampered, cosseted, doted upon, helmeted, bubble-wrapped . . . you’ve been feted and fawned over and called sweetie pie . . . we’ve been to your games, your plays, your recitals, your science fairs. Smiles ignite when you walk into a room and hundreds gasp with delight at your every tweet. And now you’ve conquered high school . . . here we all have gathered for you. But do not get the idea you’re anything special. Because you’re not. Across the country no fewer than 3.2 million seniors are graduating about now from 37,000 high schools. That’s 37,000 valedictorians, 37,000 class presidents, 340,000 swaggering jocks, 2,185,967 pairs of Uggs. But why limit ourselves to high school? Even if you’re one in a million, on a planet of 6.8 billion, that means there are nearly 7,000 people just like you. You see, if everyone is special, then no one is. If everyone gets a trophy, trophies become meaningless . . . we Americans have of late come to love accolades more than genuine achievement. We have come to see them as the point. No longer is it how you play the game, or even whether you win or lose, or learn or grow, or enjoy yourself doing it . . . now it’s ‘So what does this get me?’As you commence, I urge you to do whatever you do for no reason other than you love it and believe in its importance. The fulfilling life, the distinctive life, the relevant life, is an achievement, not something that will fall into your lap because you’re a nice person or mommy ordered it from the caterer. Exercise free will and creative, independent thought not for the satisfactions they will bring you, but for the good they will do others . . . and those who will follow them. Then you too will discover the great and curious truth of the human experience is that selflessness is the best thing you can do for yourself. The sweetest joys of life, then, come only with the recognition that you’re not special. Because everyone is.”
AMEN!! He could not have said it any better in my eyes!! We all grew up not being on the winning team, failing a test, being told we got the answer wrong. And guess what?! We survived! If we don’t have to work for anything, then what the hell is there to do? If you expect to be called a winner for showing up to work on time one day a week, then you my friend need a reality check! Not a check as in a bonus, but a check as in hockey.