The Buzz Online

September 17th, 2010

A benefit of reading the BAM at is what's become known as citizen journalism. Readers are able to add their own reporting to ours. An anonymous reader, for example, pointed out that our July/August Sports coverage of the best professional sports prospects from the class of 2010—an unprecedented four seniors from the football team signed pro contracts—left out Aaron Volpatti '10, who signed a two-year contract with the National Hockey League's Vancouver Canucks.

Most of the online comments, however, were about the Baccalaureate Address by David Rohde '90, which received mixed reviews from letter writers in print ("What the Taliban Taught Me about God," July/August). Osman Khan '93 posted a comment from his home in Pakistan: "Truly an enlightened individual who gives us much to ponder about. Well done, Brown, for inviting him. I am a Pakistani and he gave me cause for hope in our people and their compassion."

Patricia Langan '84 applied Rohde's comments to her own experiences working in Muslim countries: "Although never in a situation as dramatic as captivity, I have been in dangerous situations in Muslim countries during my career in international development and have experienced the deepest compassion there as well. Like Rohde, I was inspired to, as he says in his address, 'make my god the reduction of tensions between religions,' and I now help run Unity Productions Foundation, which aims for 'peace through the media' and uses film to help Americans break stereotypes and better understand Muslims and Islam." Bob Rozelle '70 commented, "Superb graduation address about tolerance and human compassion. A man of wisdom and insight whose professional accomplishments and frightening lifetime experiences can enlighten us all. Bravo, Brown, you picked a winner." And Erik Watson '84 added: "Astonishing. A portrayal of both what is brightest and darkest in religion in the human psyche. A call to live with equanimity and tolerance and above all with compassion."

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Related Issue
September/October 2010