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Obama Goes After Trump in Rutgers Commencement Address

Barack Obama has definitely not been Donald Trump’s biggest fan. The two political figures have repeatedly thrown shade at one another. Trump has even questioned Obama’s citizenship. In his commencement address at Rutgers University, Obama indirectly targeted Trump’s presidential campaign once again. 

According to NPR, President Obama told the graduates, “In politics and in life, ignorance is not a virtue.” Obama has repeatedly shown his distaste for the statements Trump has made during public speeches and appearances. He referenced Trump multiple times, pointing out that America was not necessarily greater in the past as Trump has tried to prove with his “Make America Great Again” slogan. Obama also challenged his ideas to build a wall and to keep Muslims out of our country.

Later in his address to the graduating class of 2016, Obama showed his growing concern with the future of the United States. Again, hinting at his clear dislike for Trump, Obama explained, “Facts, evidence, reason, logic, an understanding of science: These are good things. These are qualities you want in people making policy… That might seem obvious… We traditionally have valued those things, but, if you’re listening to today’s political debate, you might wonder where this strain of anti-intellectualism came from.”

Overall, his speech had a focus on the theme of helping one another—not only in the United States, but around the word. He warned against trying to keep the rest of the world out of our country, knowing that at this point in time it is vital that we continue to stay connected. “The world is more interconnected than ever before, and it’s becoming more connected every day,” said the President, according to The New York Times. “Building walls won’t change that.” 

NPR reported that Obama has delivered close to twelve commencement speeches during his eight years of presidency, and each has done a great job of connecting an inspiring message to graduates with a message to everyone on the state of our country and what we all need to work on for a bright future. His last commencement address is scheduled to be in June at the Air Force Academy.

Obama has run our country for almost eight years now—At the very least, he knows what the job entails. He has experience with the presidential office that only a handful of other living people have had. Seeing him worry about what the current election holds might make you think twice about the state of our country, and whose hands we want to put so much power into.

Cara Milhaven is a sophomore studying communication at Villanova University. She is a contributing writer for Her Campus National as well as the Senior Editor of Her Campus Villanova. She loves caffeine, Christmas movies, fall, and Zac Efron.