Jon Stewart’s William & Mary Commencement Address: The Entire World is an Elective

From Open Culture:

In 1984, Jon Stewart graduated from The College of William & Mary. In 1999, he began hosting Comedy Central’s news program The Daily Show. In 2004, he returned to his alma mater, immeasurably more influential than he’d left it, to give its commencement address. Despite a dated crack or two — this was the heyday of George W. Bush, the President who arguably gave Stewart’s Daily Show persona both its foil and raison d’être — the speech’s core remains sound. You, Stewart tells the massed graduates, have the power to become the next “greatest generation,” though the chance appears especially clear and present because of how the last generation “broke” the world. “It just kind of got away from us,” he half-jokes, his grin compressed by seriousness. That admission follows a stream of self-deprecation hitting everything from his tendency toward profanity to his unusually large head as an undergraduate to how his presence onstage devalues William & Mary’s very reputation.