Black Community: From Memphis to Morehouse – A Disappointing Commencement Speech by President Joe Biden.

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( I left Memphis early in the morning one August day with my parents for Morehouse College for my freshman year at age 17. It was after I had attended a party in East Memphis at a hotel. My friends and I partied one last time to “I’m Ready” by Kano, “Funkin’ for Jamacia” by Tom Brown, and Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five’s “Freedom.” Songs that I now know would greet me regularly during the parties on campus during freshman week.

Black Community: From Memphis to Morehouse - A Disappointing Commencement Speech by President Joe Biden.

While there, every speech I was required to attend pumped me up and told me what a terrific future I had, one that urged me to put the pedal to the metal. As young men, these addresses gave us a faith that too many, including Joe Biden ignore, that defies reality and makes us believe we can jump from roof to roof, fearless as if no ground was beneath us.

This was not the case this past Sunday, when President Biden instead, the president trashed the country and gave me little hope for the next stage of the class of 2024 life.

By definition, commencement means a beginning; a start, and usually references a ceremony at which academic degrees or diplomas are conferred. It is synonymous with launch, dawn, and embarkation. It is anonymous to discontinuance, epilogue, and closure. However, if you listened to or watched the remarks made by President Biden at the Morehouse College Class of 2024 graduation, you would think the entire event was about him and ignoring the heady accomplishments of the individuals in the Class of 2024.

It only took the President three paragraphs before he pronounced his first falsehood:

I got more Morehouse men in the White House telling me what to do than I know what to do.  (Laughter.)  You all think I’m kidding, don’t you?  (Laughs.)  You know I’m not.  And it’s the best thing that’s happened to me.

Although I am considered to be a seasoned researcher it only took me about ten minutes to disprove this. His overt addiction to Biden — pandering to Black, African, and Caribbean Americans was easy to disprove seeing that the only Morehouse College graduate to have ever worked in the Biden administration was Jamal Simmons (1993), former communications director for Kamala Harris.

Outside of this, his address was all about him. From being “the first Biden to ever graduate from college (a falsehood seeing that his maternal grandfather graduated from Santa Clara College)” to meeting his wife, his first job as a public defender to becoming a county councilman. As I indicated, this was supposed to be a commencement address, not an autobiography. Not to be lacking, what well-told Joe Biden autobiography would be complete without a plug to the death of his son Beau? What a sorry commencement speech to the Class of 2024 of Morehouse. No encouraging words of hope for their endeavors. Was more about him and a political speech. He just talked about himself how is that a graduation speech?

After giving his life story during the first half of his remarks, he did not go into anything optimistic, something that such an occasion requires, but rather the darkest parts of the soul, especially a soul that thinks black men, Morehouse men singularly visualize the world via skin color. He stated:

You started college just as George Floyd was murdered and there was a reckoning on race. It’s natural to wonder if democracy you hear about actually works for you. What is democracy if Black men are being killed in the street? What is democracy if a trail of broken promises still leave Black—Black communities behind? What is democracy if you have to be 10 times better than anyone else to get a fair shot? And most of all, what does it mean, as we’ve heard before, to be a Black man who loves his country even if it doesn’t love him back in equal measure?

Personally, It is an insult to compare any black man as steadfast and principled as the fathers and sons of Morehouse to an eight-time convicted felon who has a history of sticking pistols in women’s stomachs trying to rob folk. Not to forget that there is a strong probability a lot of black men may have not been able to reconstruct their lives and make it to Morehouse College as a byproduct of Biden’s 1994 crime bill – just saying.

This was the antithesis of a message that would have been provided by Benjamen Mays (who past my last semester at Morehouse in 1984), Hugh Gloster, or Howard Thurman (below). Yes the complete opposite for it was Howard Thurman who wrote:

“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

Again what was inspirative or encouraging about anything he said? To keep it a buck, what the hell was he talking about? White supremacy, George Floyd, back in chains, National Guard in Delaware for 9 months, was this a college speech or a campaign speech? All that was missing was for him to tell the audience that he “was born a poor black child.”

All this address did for me was to reinforce the fact that he believes that “if you don’t vote for [him], you ain’t black” and that when he says “I’m not kidding,” he is lying.

To stand in front of that crowd with a straight face and say that it is “natural to wonder if democracy you hear about actually works for you” and that as Black men, our nation does not love us “back in equal measure, is defeatist, snobbish and pompously condescending. Such statements are a miles away from the “oh, the places you’ll go” inspiring message college grads deserve as they celebrate their accomplishments and enter adult life.

It was just a bunch of negative race-baiting, which is something I highly doubt anyone in that audience wanted to hear on such a special day for them. What a disgraceful commencement speech. It’s not about you, Joe. It’s not about politics right now in America for these graduates. It’s about the young people who are assembled in front of you and about to graduate with hopes for a future, with hopes for a better life that their parents invested in. It’s not about you, Joe. Race-baiting on that podium was disgraceful. What you did was offensive.

The remarks included nothing of substance for black folks, just your standard-of-the-mill boogeyman calls of “white supremacy,” and “systemic racism.” If I converted this to a mathematical equation it would be = meaningless pandering/a blizzard of lies.

I can’t see how this speech was inspiring or encouraging in any way. It’s almost demotivation. The worst commencement speech I’ve ever heard. He just told graduates at Morehouse College in Georgia that America hates them because they’re black. This divisive rhetoric is exactly why Biden is losing the support of many Americans including in the Black community.

He may as well have repeated his go-to “They gonna put you back in chains” because in his worldview, if you’re black and live in America, you’re a victim.

It is as if he is unaware that there would be no HBCUs like Morehouse if it were not for U.S. Representative Justin Morrill (R-VT) who in 1862, got the Land Grant Act passed, which established colleges for African Americans. If not for this, there would be no state-funded historically Black Colleges and Universities because Democrats fought tooth and nail against it.

I waited an entire week to consider what I would write about his address. I wanted to attend my 40th class graduation anniversary but a few things came up. If the President had Morehouse men in his Whitehouse, they sure would not have approved of this speech. As I indicated, it sounded like a campaign speech and was not nearly arousing in my purview for the graduates or their family members.

Where were the accolades for the graduates? For the Morehouse Men and their hard work, intelligence, perseverance, accomplishments, and success? It’s all about him trying to get elected? If so, it makes me very sad. He is not talking about being united as a country, rather he is trying to highlight diversity and incessant racial conflict and I’m not buying into it. We are all smart Americans. and know better, because we live common folk lives. All of what he is saying does not add up.

He explained in essence, how he sees Black folk (not as equal to white people), which makes him a bigot who does not see everyone as equal. Again, this address was patronizing, divisive, disgusting, and offensive. He constantly talks down to black people, seeming not to be able to recognize that regardless of skin color, Black people care about the same things as everyone else in this country, we just see your policies are wrecking things. But to send the message to these graduates: America is racist and your future is bleak, is rather fcked up.

Just say upfront if you are delivering a political speech. I thought these speeches were supposed to be about the future of the graduates, not a sob story meets political rally. What does speaking on a “National effort to ban books (which is a lie)” have to do with motivating and galvanizing the next cadre of Black male global leadership? Not to omit to ask if he has ever considered that maybe 95 percent of Black folk do not support having any type of sexual (hetero, homo, bi, or trans) pornography books in schools with young children, or approved of drag queens reading to primary and middle school-aged kids.

What does saying “Today in Georgia, they won’t allow water to be available to you while you wait in line to vote in an election” have to do with anything? Albeit another untruth, because it is allowed in the Georgia law to make elections more secure, accessible, and fair. Since the law went into effect, the state has seen its largest overall black voter turnout in history. In concert with him calling it “Jim Crow in the 21st Century” did more harm than good, moving the MLB All-Star game from Georgia as a state is 31.9% Black or African American compared to Colorado which is 4.6% Black or African American.

Ex post facto we can all admit it. The administration invited the wrong guy to give commencement. Whose idea was it to let Biden give the commencement speech? You can see him getting sleepy. Imagine graduating and having to listen to a dementia patient lie about his life. For no reason. I like how he worked with all his dead family members too. What a classless buffoon.

The students should have invited Denzel Washington or Economist Roland Gerhard Fryer Jr. to speak and have their graduation about their many achievements and how they have and will continue to make a huge difference to the United States and the world. I was so saddened by seeing the standing U.S. President telling the Class of 2024 that they were not welcomed in America and would never be successful unless he, the great democrat hope was elected. Might need to remind him that democracy is not analogous to the Democrat party.

He also described a world of “Grand Wizards” out to destroy America and the progress of Black folk. It is ironic seeing that he was the man who eulogized Robert Byrd – an “Exalted Cyclops”, which meant that Byrd was the top officer in the local KKK in his state. Yes, the same Byrd Biden proclaimed as his “mentor” and dear friend.

Mr. President, We are Morehouse College. We are Men of Morehouse. We are a small village in this global universe. You must have not gotten the message. We persevere, for when we cannot run, we turn to each other. We look in on each other as we do our families and communities and share all. We are men and prefer to conquer than to complain – we are not victims and will never see ourselves as victims.

We live by that biblical axiom cited in Ecclesiastes 4:9-16:

9 Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labor.

10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up.

11 Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone?

12 And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.

13 Better is a poor and a wise child than an old and foolish king, who will no more be admonished.

14 For out of prison he cometh to reign; whereas also he that is born in his kingdom becometh poor.

15 I considered all the living which walk under the sun, with the second child that shall stand up in his stead.

16 There is no end of all the people, even of all that have been before them: they also that come after shall not rejoice in him. Surely this also is vanity and vexation of spirit.

We do not bitch and we do not moan. Regardless of all others, we do see ourselves in the future of America and to assert otherwise is harebrained. If you were so blessed to have one of us in your fold, he would have learned fast that we are synonymous with dark matter, the indestructible subatomic particles that comprise the majority of the universe.

So do better next time sir and never forget. You can tell a Morehouse man, but you cannot tell him much.

Staff Writer; Torrance T. Stephens

Can also purchase any of his books over at; Amazon – TTS Books.