First Lady Takes Aim at Trump During Commencement Address at CCNY Graduation Ceremony
Michelle Obama got political in her final commencement address as First Lady.
Speaking at City College, she launched a not-so-veiled attack against the likely Republican presidential nominee, Donald Trump.
"We don’t build up walls to keep people out because we know that our greatness has always depended on contributions from people who were born elsewhere but sought out this country and made it their home," Obama said.
She did not mention Trump by name, but her target was clear. Trump has made building a wall on the Mexican border a pillar of his campaign.
Obama also appeared to take aim at his vow to "make America great again," saying it is diversity that helps make America special right now.
"Here in America, we don’t let our differences tear us apart." Obama said. "Not here. Because we know that our greatness comes when we appreciate each other’s strengths, when we learn from each other, when we lean on each other."
It seemed no coincidence the First Lady chose City College for her anti-Trump Attack.
The school has long been a gateway for immigrants. It is a melting pot, with students from 150 countries who speak 100 languages, all learning together.
The First Lady singled out the immigrants, children of immigrants, single parents and risk takers in the Class of 2016, including the salutatorian, the first woman in her family to attend college.
"Daddy I'm standing here today with the First Lady of the United States of America, so hold your head high and proud," said salutatorian Andoni Mourdoukoutas. "You allowed me to push."
And while the commencement was a time for celebration some used it as a backdrop to address issues faced by City College and the CUNY system.
"We keep getting budget cuts, we have no contract now for almost 6 years," said Alan Feigenberg, chair of the CUNY professors union.
Faculty worry this burden could fall on students here who depend on a low cost education.
The First Lady addressed those issues as well — stressing the importance of funding public universities.
So future generations of graduates like these can continue to seek the American Dream.