Wellesley High school English teacher David McCullough Jr. in his graduation speech told his students the truth, “You’re not special”.
This straightforward truth to a bunch of graduates has really caused a stir in the internet. His speech has gone viral.
“Across the country no fewer than 3.2 million seniors are graduating about now from more than 37,000 high schools. That’s 37,000 valedictorians … 37,000 class presidents … 92,000 harmonizing altos … 340,000 swaggering jocks … 2,185,967 pairs of Uggs,” he said in the speech published in the Boston Herald.
He added: “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.”
McCullough makes a statement on parents who overdo it in a modern society focused on collecting achievements. “You’ve been pampered, cosseted, doted upon, helmeted, bubble wrapped … feted and fawned over and called sweetie pie.” But he adds in a video on Wellesley Channel TV YouTube page, “You see, if everyone is special, then no one is. If everyone gets a trophy, trophies become meaningless. … We have of late, we Americans, to our detriment, come to love accolades more than genuine achievement.”
For once a graduation speech that encourages students to not to achieve more and more in their life but to achieve what they love and live a selfless-life for it has been understood, greed only begets greed which ends in destruction of oneself.
McCullough’s speech has been welcomed by many for giving students a different and the correct perspective of life and showing them the truth that everyone is special in this world. Everyone has a life, not just you.
Watch the complete speech below:
But near the end of the address he says, “The sweetest joys of life, then, come only with the recognition that you’re not special. Because everyone is.”
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