Michelle Obama Moves to Quell School Lunch Revolt

First Lady Michelle Obama is moving to quell the revolt against the school meal nutrition standards that she helped set in place.

House Republicans are supporting a measure that would allow some school districts to opt out of the standards—if they can prove that it is affecting their school budgets.

In response, Michelle Obama is scheduled to meet with school leaders and experts on nutrition Tuesday to discuss the importance of federal regulation of school meals.

The strict rules, passed in 2010, limit the amount of fat, calories, sugar, and sodium served during school meals and requires more whole grains.

“Mrs. Obama will stress the importance of students, parents, school officials, community leaders, and health advocates coming together to protect and advance the tremendous progress that has been made in schools across our country,” the White House announcement reads.

“The First Lady believes passionately that school lunches have to be healthier and she is prepared to wage a big political fight over this issue,” ABC News reporter Jonathan Karl explained on Good Morning America Tuesday. 

The event is part of Michelle Obama’s effort to take a bigger role of public engagement on issues.

You’ll see a sustained level of engagement,” one senior administration official told The Hill. “She’ll continue to bring this message to where the parents and kids are.”

Source: Breitbart Feed

‘Virgin killer’ was a Madman, not a Misogynist

A 22-year-old became the latest perpetrator of a “shooting rampage” this weekend when he killed six people before dying of a gunshot wound to the head. He claimed he was taking revenge on women for a life of sexless scorn. Well, if I were a virgin at 22, I’d be angry too. But I’ll let you into a secret: in no meaningful way was this killer a misogynist, as some are claiming. He was simply insane.

It isn’t hard to imagine why Elliot Rodger struggled with girls. He was a pretty boy but self-conscious, theatrical and obviously disturbed. Despite his own protestations, he was an archetypal beta male: insecure, socially awkward and obsessed with the fantasy worlds of video games and science fiction movies. 

It’s those movies and games that provided the contextual framework for his crimes, not the “entrenched misogyny” that feminist campaigners are now jubilantly fingering. He modelled himself—particularly his camp, affected YouTube persona—on the loner protagonists of the video games with which he was obsessed and the sci-fi movies his father directed.

If you close your eyes while listening to his creepy, narcissistic videos, it’s almost as if you’re listening to the pre-game voiceover from any one of a thousand violent computer games, such as Duke Nukem or Grand Theft Auto. The reason Rodger’s over-rehearsed, pantomime villain chuckles and talk of “retribution” are so unsettling is that they remind us of these fictional bad guys.

It’s clear what’s going on: for this dorky loner, video games had become an alternate reality in a terrifyingly literal sense. Fantasy had bled into the real world, inspiring and structuring his violent fantasies. Counterstrike, which together with Halo and the ubiquitous World of Warcraft are mentioned frequently in Rodger’s manifesto, is the classic frustrated sociopath’s pastime.

And here’s where we get into controversial territory. For, as much as Rodger himself banged on about his hatred of women and his desire to punish them, both in his videos and the extraordinary manifesto he left behind, his lack of sexual experience wasn’t really the point at all.

The aetiology of Rodger’s crimes is more simple: he was psychologically damaged, unable to respond to trauma in a normal way and determined to hurt the world he felt had injured him. It becomes increasingly clear as you read his manifesto, which is riddled with racism as well as apparent sexism, that any target would have sufficed.

It just happened to be women that served as a proxy for his pain—something Rodger himself admitted: “Women represent everything that is unfair with this world,” he wrote, before he went on a killing spree that resulted in more male deaths than female. A strange sort of misogyny, that. (Let’s also not forget that he killed three of his male victims with a knife, a much more “intimate” version of murder that has even led some to speculate about his sexuality.)

“Humanity is a disgusting, wretched, depraved species,” Rodger says in his most infamous video. It’s a chilling echo of the psycho protagonists of the games he played, and a reminder that Rodger hated everyone around him, not just women. Like so many serial killers before him, he had come to view his own species, through the lens of self-loathing, as repugnant.

Rodger’s twisted view of the world was assembled piecemeal from the games he immersed himself in. His meticulously rehearsed YouTube videos directly plagiarised video games, in particular World of Warcraft: his retribution and “mountain of skulls” routine is lifted directly from the current boss of that game, Garrosh Hellscream. Fragments of game dialogue are quoted verbatim in his manifesto.

So why fixate on women? Well, sexual confidence is one of the ordinary anxieties everyone has: fear of “the other,” as social scientists call it. The popular press is gifted at exploiting these fears—as is mental illness, which fixates on obvious insecurity. Anxieties about those of other sexes, sexual orientations and races are often crudely labeled “Right-wing” by snobbish metropolitan newspapers.

What is remarkable, and sad, about Rodger’s response to his alienation is that he fixated on games rather than his dad’s films. His father was involved in the production of the Hunger Games movie series, a film arc that represents the triumph of passionate, pacifist, wronged geek over sociopathic, athletic jock. In responding to his damage as he did, Rodger became that which he professed to hate: the anarchic, preening bully. 

So it is the games we should look to for insight into his condition. It’s understandable that after a tragedy those left should seek answers—and depressingly predictable that the feminist Left should seize on his manifesto as further ammunition for their insatiable, misandristic war of attrition. But no one is served by the delusion that so-called “everyday sexism” is spilling over into murderous rampages. There is a colossal gulf between casual sexism—what some call “old-fashioned” attitudes to women’s roles in society—and what Rodger did.

To debate Rodger in terms of misogyny is to purposefully misunderstand why he killed, in furtherance of political ends, and to rob us as a society of the ability to stop other damaged individuals from committing such horrible acts. It is a self-defeating, bigoted and hateful response to a horrible tragedy. 

So ignore the shoddy, opportunistic posturing from feminists about Rodger’s crimes. It’s the blurring of fantasy and reality in today’s video game-obsessed young men that’s the real enemy. If there’s a cultural milieu that contributed to the creation of Elliot Rodger, it was that of nihilistic video games, not the myth of patriarchal oppression.

Source: Breitbart Feed

World View: Nigeria Backs Out of Deal to Recover Boko Haram’s Abducted Schoolgirls

This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

  • Nigeria backs out of deal to recover Boko Haram’s abducted schoolgirls
  • Attacks on schoolgirls spread to Balochistan in southwest Pakistan
  • Jordan bluntly expels Syria’s ambassador

Nigeria backs out of deal to recover Boko Haram’s abducted schoolgirls

Nigerian government officials are saying that they know the location of the 200+ schoolgirls that were abducted by Boko Haram last month, but they will not be recovered by force because any gunfire would put the girls’ lives in danger.

The BBC is reporting that the Nigerian government had made a deal with Boko Haram to exchange 50 of the girls for 100 Boko Haram militants who have been captured and put in jail. However, the government backed out of the deal during a summit meeting earlier this month with Nigerian, African, and Western leaders at which they agreed to wage “total war” against Boko Haram. No reason was given for why the deal was canceled, but it’s surmised that negotiating with terrorists and agreeing to the exchange would encourage a lot more abductions of other schoolgirls. Channels TV (Nigeria)

Attacks on schoolgirls spread to Balochistan in southwest Pakistan

The Pakistani Taliban (Tehrik-e-Taliban – TTP) have mostly focused their terrorist attacks on northwest Pakistan, but now a new splinter group, Tanzeem-ul-Islami-ul-Furqan (TIF – Organization of the creation of Islam) is spreading terror attacks deep into the southwest province of Balochistan and is particularly targeting schools with girls enrolled. A letter sent to 23 English Language Learning Centers warned that teaching in English is forbidden and added:

Private schools should completely stop girls’ education, both co-education and separate education. We urge all van and taxi drivers to refrain from taking girls to schools. Otherwise, they will also be targeted… Any institution or persons defying the warning will be deemed as an enemy of Islam and therefore punished.

The group has been killing school teachers and burning down schools and has threatened “the worst consequences as prescribed in the Quran” if girls’ education is not completely shut down. 

All this is happening in the context of separatist activist by a Baloch nationalist group called the Baloch Student Organization (BSO-Azad). Pakistan’s government has reacted to this separatist activism by relocating thousands of ethnic Punjabis to Balochistan for large development project. This has led to violence by Balochis against Punjabis with the result that over 19,000 Balochi civilians have “disappeared” from abductions by Pakistan’s intelligence agency, Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), with more than 2,000 of them having been “killed and dumped.” South Asia Terrorism Portal (SATP – India) and Al-Jazeera

Jordan bluntly expels Syria’s ambassador

A furious Jordanian foreign ministry declared Syria’s ambassador Bahjat Suleiman, a former general and intelligence chief, as persona non grata, and ordered him to leave the country within 24 hours. According to the state-run news agency:

The government took the decision after the envoy continued his insults and un-friendly statements against Jordan, Jordanian political figures, national institutions and citizens, despite repeated warnings by the government not to indulge in and desist from making such provocative statements, the envoy said. 

“Mr. Suleiman used Jordan as a platform to cast doubt on Jordan’s stances and directed baseless accusations on more than one occasion and through such statements,” the spokesperson said, noting that he used Jordanian territories to direct insults against Arab and neighboring countries and their leadership, with whom Jordan has strong ties. 

These insults, which targeted Jordan and Arab countries, were a flagrant violation of all diplomatic norms and charters, she said, stressing that Jordan totally rejects such acts. The envoy had not observed the simplest diplomatic norms in a country that is hosting hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees.

Jordan is harboring over a million refugees from Syria as a result of the genocidal war and crimes against humanity by Syria’s president Bashar al-Assad. Apparently some of the insults that Jordan was complaining about was that Suleiman accused Jordan of harboring terrorists by giving refuge to refugees. This guy really has balls. 

The expulsion comes just a few days before the planned June 3 Syrian presidential election, which many people consider to be a farce. Suleiman had announced that Syrian citizens living in Jordan would be able to come to the Syrian embassy in Amman and vote there. Jordan’s foreign minister had warned that this could bring security problems to Amman. 

In a tit-for-tat retaliation, Syria expelled Jordan’s chargé-d’affaires from Damascus. Jordanian officials said the chargé d’affaires was not currently in Syria. Petra (Jordan) and Reuters

Permanent web link to this article
Receive daily World View columns by e-mail

Source: Breitbart Feed

Rabbi Shmuley Right on Mideast, Wrong on Pius XII

I agree with Rabbi Shmuley’s main assessment that Pope Francis needs to show moral clarity and stand with Israel against those who seek to destroy her.

However, to no fault of his own, Shmuley’s argument is based on false premises, as he has fallen prey to an old Soviet disinformation campaign by insinuating that Pius XII was “Hitler’s Pope.” Pope Pius XII, in fact, is precisely the moral leader Pope Francis should look to emulate.

Historian Ronald Rychlak meticulously documented Pius XII’s noble efforts on behalf of the Jews in Hitler, The War, and the Pope

When the Holocaust was in full swing, Pius XII responded by turning almost the entirety of the Vatican City into a secret refugee shelter for Jews. Historical documents estimate that Pius XII’s personal efforts saved hundreds of thousands of Jews from extermination.

Pius XII’s personal intervention to save as many Jews as possible during the holocaust had such a profound effect on Israel Zolli, chief rabbi of Rome, that he decided to convert from Judaism to Catholicism.

Pope Pius XII despised the Nazis. He was quoted as saying, “The Nazis are in reality only miserable plagiarists who dress up old errors with new tinsel. It does not only make any difference whether they flock to the banners of social revolution, whether they are guided by a false concept of the world and of life, or whether they are possessed by the superstition of a race and blood cult.”

Dr. Rafaele Cantoni, former director of the Italian Jewish Assistance committee, said in the American Jewish Year Book of 1944-1945:

The Church and the papacy have saved Jews as much and in as far as they could save Christians… Six million of my co-religionists have been murdered by the Nazis, but there could have been many more victims, had it not been for the efficacious intervention of Pius XII.

In Disinformation: Former Spy Chief Reveals Secret Strategies for Undermining Freedom, Attacking Religion, and Promoting Terrorism, Rychlak, along with a former USSR two-star General, carefully trace the Soviets’ decades-long disinformatsiya campaign to destroy their arch enemy: the Vatican.

Rychlak writes, “The Soviets understood that Pius XII was a mortal threat to their ideology, despising communism as much as he did Nazism. They thus embarked on an unholy crusade to destroy the pope and his reputation, to scandalize his flock, and to foment division among faiths.”

The campaign to destroy Pius XII’s reputation started with an innocent 1945 Radio Moscow broadcast that turned into a 1960 KGB-financed play, titled The Deputy, in which Pius was ruthlessly attacked as a willfully blind onlooker to the Holocaust.

Dr. Joseph Lichten, the head of the Jewish Anti-Defamation League in Italy at the time, said of Pius XII’s false portrayal in The Deputy, “[Pius XII] did everything humanly possible to save lives and alleviate suffering among the Jews.”

In 1970, The Silence of Pius XII was published, again backed by KGB efforts and based on fabricated documents. The decades-long masterful disinformation campaign reached its apex with Hitler’s Pope, published in 1999. Author John Cornwell claimed he had new evidence that Pius XII “had a personal antipathy towards the Jews” and found this through research in secret Vatican archives.

In Disinformation, Rychlak shows how Cornwell displayed his supposed new-found evidence through KGB disinformation techniques. He writes, “To support his conclusion that Pius was Hitler’s Pope, Cornwell selectively edited quotes from Western publications, a technique widely used by the ‘science’ of disinformation. By this method, a clever writer can turn a quotation into the exact opposite of what was originally intended.”

Pius XII was not “Hitler’s Pope.” History reflects the aforementioned narrative as truth, and so should we.

Source: Breitbart Feed

Commencement Address by Admiral William McRaven at UT Austin

Adm. William H. McRaven is the ninth commander of U.S. Special Operations Command. He is a Navy admiral and former commander of SEAL Team 3, acclaimed for leading the mission to find Osama bin Laden. On May 17, Adm. McRaven delivered the commencement address at his alma mater, University of Texas at Austin. Here are his remarks in full.

The University of Texas slogan is “What starts here changes the world.”

I have to admit—I kinda like it.

“What starts here changes the world.”

Tonight there are almost 8,000 students graduating from UT.

That great paragon of analytical rigor, Ask.Com, says that the average American will meet 10,000 people in their lifetime.

That’s a lot of folks. But if every one of you changed the lives of just 10 people, and each one of those folks changed the lives of another 10 people—just 10—then in five generations, 125 years, the class of 2014 will have changed the lives of 800 million people.

Eight-hundred million people—think of it: over twice the population of the United States. Go one more generation and you can change the entire population of the world—eight billion people.

If you think it’s hard to change the lives of 10 people, change their lives forever, you’re wrong.

I saw it happen every day in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A young Army officer makes a decision to go left instead of right down a road in Baghdad and the 10 soldiers with him are saved from close-in ambush.

In Kandahar province, Afghanistan, a noncommissioned officer from the Female Engagement Team senses something isn’t right and directs the infantry platoon away from a 500-pound IED, saving the lives of a dozen soldiers.

Generations were saved by one decision, by one person.But, if you think about it, not only were these soldiers saved by the decisions of one person, but their children yet unborn were also saved. And their children’s children were saved.

But changing the world can happen anywhere and anyone can do it.

So, what starts here can indeed change the world, but the question is: What will the world look like after you change it?

Well, I am confident that it will look much, much better, but if you will humor this old sailor for just a moment, I have a few suggestions that may help you on your way to a better a world.

And while these lessons were learned during my time in the military, I can assure you that it matters not whether you ever served a day in uniform. It matters not your gender, your ethnic or religious background, your orientation, or your social status. Our struggles in this world are similar and the lessons to overcome those struggles and to move forward—changing ourselves and the world around us—will apply equally to all.

I have been a Navy SEAL for 36 years. But it all began when I left UT for Basic SEAL training in Coronado, Calif.

Basic SEAL training is six months of long, torturous runs in the soft sand, midnight swims in the cold water off San Diego, obstacle courses, unending calisthenics, days without sleep and always being cold, wet and miserable.

It is six months of being constantly harassed by professionally trained warriors who seek to find the weak of mind and body and eliminate them from ever becoming a Navy SEAL.

But, the training also seeks to find those students who can lead in an environment of constant stress, chaos, failure and hardships. To me basic SEAL training was a lifetime of challenges crammed into six months.

So, here are lessons I learned from basic SEAL training that hopefully will be of value to you as you move forward in life.

1. Every morning in basic SEAL training, my instructors, who at the time were all Vietnam veterans, would show up in my barracks room and the first thing they would inspect was your bed. If you did it right, the corners would be square, the covers pulled tight, the pillow centered just under the headboard and the extra blanket folded neatly at the foot of the rack—that’s Navy talk for bed.

It was a simple task, mundane at best. But every morning we were required to make our bed to perfection. It seemed a little ridiculous at the time, particularly in light of the fact that were aspiring to be real warriors, tough battle hardened SEALs, but the wisdom of this simple act has been proven to me many times over.

If you make your bed every morning you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride and it will encourage you to do another task and another and another. By the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that little things in life matter.

If you can’t do the little things right, you will never do the big things right.

And if by chance you have a miserable day, you will come home to a bed that is made—that you made—and a made bed gives you encouragement that tomorrow will be better.

If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.

2. During SEAL training the students are broken down into boat crews. Each crew is seven students—three on each side of a small rubber boat and one coxswain to help guide the dingy. Every day, your boat crew forms up on the beach and is instructed to get through the surfzone and paddle several miles down the coast.

In the winter, the surf off San Diego can get to be 8 to 10 feet high and it is exceedingly difficult to paddle through the plunging surf unless everyone digs in. Every paddle must be synchronized to the stroke count of the coxswain. Everyone must exert equal effort or the boat will turn against the wave and be unceremoniously tossed back on the beach.

For the boat to make it to its destination, everyone must paddle.

You can’t change the world alone—you will need some help—and to truly get from your starting point to your destination takes friends, colleagues, the goodwill of strangers and a strong coxswain to guide them.

If you want to change the world, find someone to help you paddle.

3. Over a few weeks of difficult training my SEAL class, which started with 150 men, was down to just 42. There were now six boat crews of seven men each.

I was in the boat with the tall guys, but the best boat crew we had was made up of the little guys—the munchkin crew we called them. No one was over about 5-foot-5.

The munchkin boat crew had one American Indian, one African-American, one Polish-American, one Greek-American, one Italian-American and two tough kids from the Midwest.

They out-paddled, out-ran and out-swam all the other boat crews.

The big men in the other boat crews would always make good-natured fun of the tiny little flippers the munchkins put on their tiny little feet prior to every swim. But somehow these little guys, from every corner of the nation and the world, always had the last laugh—swimming faster than everyone and reaching the shore long before the rest of us.

SEAL training was a great equalizer. Nothing mattered but your will to succeed. Not your color, not your ethnic background, not your education and not your social status.

If you want to change the world, measure people by the size of their heart, not the size of their flippers.

4. Several times a week, the instructors would line up the class and do a uniform inspection. It was exceptionally thorough. Your hat had to be perfectly starched, your uniform immaculately pressed and your belt buckle shiny and void of any smudges.

But it seemed that no matter how much effort you put into starching your hat, or pressing your uniform or polishing your belt buckle, it just wasn’t good enough. The instructors would find “something” wrong.

For failing the uniform inspection, the student had to run, fully clothed, into the surfzone and then, wet from head to toe, roll around on the beach until every part of your body was covered with sand. The effect was known as a “sugar cookie.” You stayed in that uniform the rest of the day—cold, wet and sandy.

There were many students who just couldn’t accept the fact that all their effort was in vain. That no matter how hard they tried to get the uniform right, it was unappreciated.

Those students didn’t make it through training. Those students didn’t understand the purpose of the drill. You were never going to succeed. You were never going to have a perfect uniform.

Sometimes, no matter how well you prepare or how well you perform, you still end up as a sugar cookie. It’s just the way life is sometimes.

If you want to change the world, get over being a sugar cookie and keep moving forward.

5. Every day during training you were challenged with multiple physical events. Long runs, long swims, obstacle courses, hours of calisthenics—something designed to test your mettle.

Every event had standards, times that you had to meet. If you failed to meet those standards, your name was posted on a list and at the end of the day those on the list were invited to a “circus.”

A circus was two hours of additional calisthenics designed to wear you down, to break your spirit, to force you to quit. No one wanted a circus. A circus meant that for that day you didn’t measure up. A circus meant more fatigue, and more fatigue meant that the following day would be more difficult—and more circuses were likely.

But at some time during SEAL training, everyone—everyone—made the circus list. Yet an interesting thing happened to those who were constantly on the list. Over time those students, who did two hours of extra calisthenics, got stronger and stronger. The pain of the circuses built inner strength—built physical resiliency.

Life is filled with circuses. You will fail. You will likely fail often. It will be painful. It will be discouraging. At times it will test you to your very core.

But if you want to change the world, don’t be afraid of the circuses.

6. At least twice a week, the trainees were required to run the obstacle course. The obstacle course contained 25 obstacles including a 10-foot-high wall, a 30-foot cargo net and a barbed-wire crawl, to name a few.

But the most challenging obstacle was the slide for life. It had a three-level, 30-foot tower at one end and a one-level tower at the other. In between was a 200-foot-long rope.

You had to climb the three-tiered tower and, once at the top, you grabbed the rope, swung underneath the rope and pulled yourself hand over hand until you got to the other end.

The record for the obstacle course had stood for years when my class began training in 1977. The record seemed unbeatable until one day a student decided to go down the slide for life—head-first. Instead of swinging his body underneath the rope and inching his way down, he bravely mounted the top of the rope and thrust himself forward.

It was a dangerous move—seemingly foolish, and fraught with risk. Failure could mean injury and being dropped from the training. Without hesitation, the student slid down the rope, perilously fast. Instead of several minutes, it only took him half that time and by the end of the course he had broken the record.

If you want to change the world sometimes you have to slide down the obstacle head-first.

7. During the land-warfare phase of training, the students are flown out to San Clemente Island near San Diego. The waters off San Clemente are a breeding ground for great white sharks. To pass SEAL training, there are a series of long swims that must be completed. One is the night swim.

Before the swim, the instructors joyfully brief the trainees on all the species of sharks that inhabit the waters off San Clemente. The instructors assure you, however, that no student has ever been eaten by a shark—at least not recently.

But, you are also taught that if a shark begins to circle your position, stand your ground. Do not swim away. Do not act afraid. And if the shark, hungry for a midnight snack, darts towards you, then summon up all your strength and punch him in the snout and he will turn and swim away.

There are a lot of sharks in the world. If you hope to complete the swim you will have to deal with them.

So, if you want to change the world, don’t back down from the sharks.

8. As Navy SEALs, one of our jobs is to conduct underwater attacks against enemy shipping. We practiced this technique extensively during basic training. The ship-attack mission is where a pair of SEAL divers is dropped off outside an enemy harbor and then swims well over 2 miles—underwater—using nothing but a depth gauge and a compass to get to their target.

During the entire swim, even well below the surface, there is some light that comes through. It is comforting to know that there is open water above you. But as you approach the ship, which is tied to a pier, the light begins to fade. The steel structure of the ship blocks the moonlight, it blocks the surrounding street lamps, it blocks all ambient light.

To be successful in your mission, you have to swim under the ship and find the keel—the centerline and the deepest part of the ship. This is your objective. But the keel is also the darkest part of the ship, where you cannot see your hand in front of your face, where the noise from the ship’s machinery is deafening and where it is easy to get disoriented and fail.

Every SEAL knows that under the keel, at the darkest moment of the mission, is the time when you must be calm, composed—when all your tactical skills, your physical power and all your inner strength must be brought to bear.

If you want to change the world, you must be your very best in the darkest moment.

9. The ninth week of SEAL training is referred to as Hell Week. It is six days of no sleep, constant physical and mental harassment and one special day at the Mud Flats. The Mud Flats are an area between San Diego and Tijuana where the water runs off and creates the Tijuana slues—a swampy patch of terrain where the mud will engulf you.

It is on Wednesday of Hell Week that you paddle down to the mud flats and spend the next 15 hours trying to survive the freezing-cold mud, the howling wind and the incessant pressure from the instructors to quit.

As the sun began to set that Wednesday evening, my training class, having committed some “egregious infraction of the rules” was ordered into the mud. The mud consumed each man till there was nothing visible but our heads. The instructors told us we could leave the mud if only five men would quit—just five men and we could get out of the oppressive cold.

Looking around the mud flat, it was apparent that some students were about to give up. It was still over eight hours till the sun came up—eight more hours of bone-chilling cold. The chattering teeth and shivering moans of the trainees were so loud it was hard to hear anything. And then, one voice began to echo through the night—one voice raised in song.

The song was terribly out of tune, but sung with great enthusiasm. One voice became two, and two became three, and before long everyone in the class was singing.

We knew that if one man could rise above the misery then others could as well. The instructors threatened us with more time in the mud if we kept up the singing—but the singing persisted. And somehow, the mud seemed a little warmer, the wind a little tamer and the dawn not so far away.

If I have learned anything in my time traveling the world, it is the power of hope. The power of one person—Washington, Lincoln, King, Mandela and even a young girl from Pakistan named Malala—can change the world by giving people hope.

So, if you want to change the world, start singing when you’re up to your neck in mud.

10. Finally, in SEAL training there is a bell. A brass bell that hangs in the center of the compound for all the students to see.

All you have to do to quit is ring the bell. Ring the bell and you no longer have to wake up at 5 o’clock. Ring the bell and you no longer have to do the freezing cold swims. Ring the bell and you no longer have to do the runs, the obstacle course, the PT—and you no longer have to endure the hardships of training. Just ring the bell.

If you want to change the world don’t ever, ever ring the bell.

To the graduating class of 2014, you are moments away from graduating. Moments away from beginning your journey through life. Moments away from starting to change the world—for the better.

It will not be easy.

But start each day with a task completed. Find someone to help you through life. Respect everyone. Know that life is not fair and that you will fail often, but if you take some risks, step up when the times are toughest, face down the bullies, lift up the downtrodden and never, ever give up—if you do these things, then the next generation and the generations that follow will live in a world far better than the one we have today. And what started here will indeed have changed the world, for the better.

Thank you very much. Hook ’em horns.

Photo by Marsha Miller via UT Austin.

Source: Breitbart Feed