Hello Internet! I would like to share with you the speech that I gave this past Friday, May 29, at the Laguna Seca raceway for the Pacific Grove High School Class of 2020 graduation ceremony. You may also read an article on my speech by the Monterey County Weekly here. The text of the speech follows.
These are the times that try men’s souls.Thomas Paine
It is times like these when it is all too easy to acquiesce to the sense of dark despair pervading the world. I, too, feel the almost hypnotic seduction of the darkness, a suffocating paranoia fueled by relentless media. As one by one tournaments and festivals, classes and clubs, dances and even graduation ceremonies cancel, stocks plunge into losses whose red horror rivals that upon Lady Macbeth’s hands, and the world seems to be crumbling from its very center as the ground beneath our feet—once so visceral and so solid—disintegrates into mere wisps of failed promises. And let us not forget that beyond the inevitability of the infection and death of millions of people worldwide due to the coronavirus, the conflicts in the Middle East and in Africa have not ceased; the immigration crisis involving the displacement of hundreds of millions is growing graver every minute of every day, and climate change is still marching towards its point of no return. You would not be downplaying our situation if you claimed that we perhaps face total, utter, collapse as a species. Now, more than ever, does it seem futile to fight our seemingly inescapable fate, and perhaps it is simply best to end the game now and leave others to pick up the pieces.