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The E.Newspaper By Dr. Howdy, Ph.D. A.P.E., N.U.T.
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Division At Dartmouth - A Student Leader Speaks His Mind
Dartmouth College is older than the United States of America, having been established in 1750 as "Moore's Indian Charity School." That's a part of Dartmouth's history that would be unknown to most Americans, but the school was established by Reverend Eleazar Wheelock, a leading figure in the nation's first Great Awakening. Wheelock established the school with the purpose of evangelizing American Indians, and he intended for the school eventually known as Dartmouth College to compete with Harvard and Yale in terms of academic distinction. In other words, Dartmouth College is an Ivy League institution originally established for the evangelization of Native Americans.
Keep that in mind as you learn of more recent developments. On September 20, Dartmouth's student body president, Noah Riner, delivered the customary convocation address--a responsibility that comes with his elected position. Mr. Riner's speech was relatively short, intensely personal, and intellectually courageous. All that explains why Mr. Riner, a home-schooled native of Louisville, Kentucky, soon found himself at the center of controversy.
The response to Riner's speech included vitriolic outrage. He was denounced, criticized, and lambasted for the content of his controversial address. The Student Assembly's vice president for student life resigned the very next day, indicating that she could not serve with Riner because of his "appalling" speech to incoming freshmen.
What in the world did Riner say? "You really are special," he told the Dartmouth class of 2009. But Mr. Riner didn't stop there.