Obama Slams Political Climate in Rutgers Commencement Address
President Barack Obama tore into the recent political climate of the United States during a commencement address at Rutgers.
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) May 15, 2016
“The world is more interconnected than ever before, and it’s becoming more connected every day. Building walls won’t change that,” Obama said, receiving cheers and applause from the crowd of more than 17,000 graduates.
“To help ourselves, we’ve got to help others. Not pull up the drawbridge and try to keep the world out,” Obama said.
The Hill reports:
Though Obama didn’t mention Trump by name, he criticized those who have suggested keeping Muslims from entering the country, one of the cornerstones of Trump’s campaign.
“Isolating or disparaging Muslims, suggesting they should be treated differently when it comes to entering this country … it would alienate the very communities at home and abroad who are most important in fighting the war against extremism,” he said, adding that it also runs counter to American values.
Obama then attacked what he said is “anti-intellectualism,” saying some have started to think facts and reason are elitist ideals.
“Facts, evidence, reason, logic and understanding of science, those are good things,” Obama said. “These are qualities you want in people making policy.
“We traditionally have valued those things, but if you were to listen to today’s political debate, you might wonder where this strain of anti-intellectualism came from,” Obama said. “So, class of 2016, let me be clear as I can be: In politics and in life, ignorance is not a virtue. It’s not cool to not know what you’re talking about.”
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