Signs of the Times

Topic: On Going Out into the World

[Robert Hutchings, President of the University of Chicago, in an address to the graduating class, as quoted in the Daily Journal, Antigo, Wisconsin]

I am worried about your morals. This university will not have done its whole duty to the nation if you give way before the current of contemporary life. ... Do not let "practical" men tell you that you should surrender your ideals because they are impractical. Do not be reconciled to dishonesty, indecency, and brutality because gentlemanly ways have been discovered of being dishonest, indecent, and brutal. As time passes, resist the corruption that must come with it. Take your stand now before time has corrupted you. Before you know it, it will be too late. Courage, temperance, liberality, honor, justice, wisdom, reason, and understanding, these are still the virtues. In the intellectual virtues this university has tried to train you. The life you have led here should have helped you toward the rest. If come what may you hold them fast, you will do honor to yourselves and to the university, and you will serve your country.

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January 18, 1936

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