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Tom Hanks rails against Americans who ‘don’t embrace liberty’ in rousing speech to Harvard grads

In a keynote address to Harvard graduates, Tom Hanks argued that Americans who do not embrace freedom and who are indifferent to it will be harmful to “forging a perfect union.” than”.

On Thursday (May 25), the Oscar-winning actor was invited to see off more than 9,000 graduates at the university’s 372th diploma ceremony.

Welcoming him on stage, Harvard President Lawrence Bacow called him “Wilson’s best friend, Buzz’s friend, Ryan’s savior, America’s father,” before gifting him a volleyball in gratitude. his role in casting Ohay, where to stay awake, his character talks to an old volleyball.

In Hanks’ fiery speech, he invoked Harvard’s motto, “veritas,” the Latin word for truth.

“For some people, truth is no longer an experience. It’s no longer based on data, it’s not common sense, it’s not even common sense,” Hank said.

“Telling the truth is no longer the norm for public service,” he said. It is no longer an end to our fears, or a guide to our actions. Truth is now considered malleable, from a point of view and by a zero-sum game.”

Moving on, the prolific actor said they had a choice. “It is the same choice for all adults who must decide to be one of three types of Americans: Those who embrace freedom and liberty for all; who won’t; or indifferent people.

“Only the first will do the work of creating a more perfect union, an indivisible nation. Others get in the way.”

At the end of his speech, he emphasized the views of a group that included not only undergraduates but also graduates of Harvard’s professional and extension schools.

“The responsibility is yours. Ours. Effort is optional. But truth, truth is divine. can not change. Chiseled into the rock and foundation of our republic,” he said.

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Hanks, who was awarded an honorary doctor of arts, mocked his own lack of academic credentials on a stage filled with the world’s brightest minds and most accomplished scientists.

“It’s not fair, but please don’t be bitter about this fact,” he said.

“Now, without doing a bit of work, not spending time in class, not once walking into that library – to have anything to do with Harvard’s graduating class, its faculty, or its alumni. its brilliant student – I make a damn good life playing someone who did,” he said in reference to his depiction of fictional Harvard professor Robert Langdon in three films based on the novel. Dan Brown’s theory – The Da Vinci code, Angels and Demons And hell.

“That’s the way of the world, kids,” Hanks joked to create a burst of laughter.

“May kindness and mercy follow you every day,” he concluded, referring to a scripture. “All the days of your life. Flash.”

Additional Associated Press reporting


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