Saturday I attended my sister's graduation from Westminster College (Congrat's Karisa!), and I actually got a chance to hear one of the better graduation speaches I've heard at a graduation. And it wasn't even from an invited speaker, but from the student chosen by the graduating class.
Now, when I hear speaches from graduating students, I've gotten used to hearing about general memories or reflection on the time they've spent in school that leads up to the we-did-it-and-I'll-miss-you-all ending. However, this one was different. Yes, there were a few reflections of the major events that occurred during their college years, but ultimately the speach was about the future. It carried the "yes we made it, but we're not done yet" attitide and focused not on financial successes, but on making a positive difference in the world. For a senior on their graduation day, the speach had remarkable perspective.
And the saddest thing was the few in the audience around me who mocked the hope (and possible naievity) with which she spoke. People who had decided that their individual comfort was more important than improving the world. I got pretty close to slapping one guy upside the head and telling him that he could learn a thing or two from her.
There are few things more noble than putting the needs of others ahead of your own, but unfortunately it's those who do things only for themselves who we are bombarded with in the media.