Vice President Dick Cheney will give the commencement address at Brigham Young University this year. The Vice President will give only one other commencement address, and that will be at West Point. Whether you voted for him or not, whether you agree with him or not, having the Vice President address your graduating class is an honor. It’s a much greater honor than many of the others who will be giving commencement addresses this year.
But not everyone agrees it is an honor. Based on the reaction of the university’s democrats, you’d think Sauron was coming from Mordor to address the students. Professor Warner Woodworth also doesn’t like the idea of Vice President Cheney addressing the students of BYU. He said that the university has “a heavy emphasis on personal honesty and integrity in all we do.” And “Cheney just doesn’t measure up,” he said. What are the areas that are objectionable?
Critics at the school question whether Cheney sets a good example for graduates, citing his promotion of faulty intelligence before the Iraq war and his role in the CIA leak scandal.
Let’s look at the complaints. First, Vice President Cheney promoted faulty intelligence. Did he know that the intelligence was incorrect? He didn’t, and neither did any of the other nations of the world. I wonder if Woodworth would like to be held to the same standard. If he ever teaches something as true that is later proven to be false, will he resign since teaching something false would violate his “personal honesty and integrity”? I don’t think so.
And second, Woodworth is concerned about the Vice President’s role in the CIA leak scandal. Pray tell, what was his role? Did he leak that Valerie Plame worked at the CIA? No, that was Richard Armitage, who was working under then Secretary of State Colin Powell in the State Department. People like to tar the Vice President for Scooter Libby being convicted of perjury, but if we accept that an underling’s actions are the responsibility of the boss, then Powell’s feet should be held to the fire for Armitage’s loose lips, right?
Since these complaints are baseless, it appears that the good professor’s main complain about the Vice President is that he is an evil and nasty Republican, and he hates thems, my precious. He hates thems, nasty filthy Republicanses.