Tom Hanks delivers commencement speech at Harvard: ‘The truth is sacred’

Already probably the most embellished and acclaimed actors in movie historical past, Tom Hanks added a brand new accomplishment to his résumé when he delivered the commencement address at Harvard University’s commencement on Thursday.

The two-time Oscar winner, who acquired an honorary doctorate of arts from the distinguished college, opened his speech with a joke about how he by no means needed to examine to get his diploma, alluding to his position as fictional Harvard professor Robert Langdon in “The Da Vinci Code” motion pictures.

“It’s not fair, but please don’t be embittered by this fact,” Hanks joked.

“Now, without having done a lick of work, without having spent any time in class, without once walking into that library, in order to have anything to do with the graduating class of Harvard, its faculty, or its distinguished alumni, I make a damn good living playing someone who did.”

Hanks, who reminded the viewers that he spent two years at California’s Chabot Community and attended California State University Sacramento for 2 semesters, then dove right into a speech that was heavy on superhero references, with a number of mentions of “truth, justice and the American way.”

“We could all use a superhero right now,” he stated at one level.

The “Forrest Gump” star, who additionally acquired a volleyball from the college — a reference to Wilson in “Cast Away” — continued to concentrate on truth as an necessary a part of our lives that is being threatened.

“For the truth, to some, is no longer empirical. It’s no longer based on data nor common sense nor even common decency,” he stated.

“Telling the truth is no longer the benchmark for public service. It’s no longer the salve to our fears or the guide to our actions. Truth is now considered malleable, by opinion, by zero-sum end games,” he defined. “Imagery is manufactured with audacity, with purpose to achieve the primal task of marring the truth with mock logic to achieve with fake expertise, with false sincerity.”

Hanks continued to hone in on the significance of truth whereas lamenting about how many individuals “play fast and loose” with it and the way “indifference” is its enemy.

“Every day, every year, and for every graduating class, there is a choice to be made,” he stated.

“It’s the same option for all grown-ups who have to decide to be one of three types of Americans — those who embrace liberty and freedom for all, those who won’t, or those who are indifferent. Only the first do the work of creating a more perfect union, a nation indivisible. The others get in the way.”

The actor then shared some highly effective phrases on talking up for what’s proper.

“In the never-ending battle you have all officially joined as of today, the difference is in how truly you believe, in how vociferously you promote, in how tightly you hold to the truth that is self-evident: that of course we are all created equally yet differently, and of course we are all in this together,” he stated.

As his speech drew to an in depth, Hanks reminded graduates of the necessity to safeguard the truth.

“If you live in the United States of America, the responsibility is yours. Ours. The effort is optional, but the truth is sacred, unalterable, chiseled into the stone of the foundation of our republic,” he stated.

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