Jerry Seinfeld to Prove He’s Not Terrified of ‘PC’ College Students With Commencement Speech

‘What’s the deal with being afraid of young people?’
Jerry Seinfeld to Prove He’s Not Terrified of ‘PC’ College Students With Commencement Speech

Duke University recently announced their 2024 commencement speaker, the notable public figure tasked with inspiring the graduating class as they prepare to enter the nightmare realm known as adulthood. The news was delivered via a YouTube video in which Duke President Vincent Price (no relation) chats with students over a cup of coffee.

The students say that they want a commencement speaker who’s “funny” and who likes “cinnamon babka.” It’s then revealed that the unseen figure who’s been serving them coffee is none other than Bee Movie star Jerry Seinfeld! Yup, Seinfeld will be the one delivering the commencement speech in May. “I’ve got a lot of things to tell you,” Seinfeld informed students at the end of the promo, while conveniently not divulging exactly how much of the speech will be about airline food. 

In some ways, this news isn’t all that surprising, considering that Seinfeld’s daughter is a Duke alumna, and his son is a current student. But, then again, Seinfeld’s past comments have indicated that he’s been avoiding college campuses like the (woke) plague. In 2015, Seinfeld made headlines for his complaints about college audiences after telling an interviewer, “I don’t play colleges, but I hear a lot of people tell me, ‘Don’t go near colleges. They’re so PC.’” He went on to say that students “just want to use these words: ‘That’s racist;’ ‘That’s sexist;’ ‘That’s prejudice,'” adding, “They don’t know what the hell they’re talking about.” And to be fair, if there’s one comedian who is an expert on how teenagers act, it’s Jerry Seinfeld

During a 2018 interview with Ricky Gervais, the de facto authority on manufacturing nonexistent controversies, Seinfeld took issue with the reporting around this story, pointing out that he wasn’t specifically boycotting colleges, merely relaying an opinion shared with him by an unnamed comedian friend. Of course, he also enthusiastically agreed with said opinion, but whatever.  

Regardless of whether Seinfeld’s claim that he doesn’t “play colleges” was the result of his professional status (although he was performing at colleges as recently as 2012) or his fear of woke audiences who likely wouldn’t respond well to his uninspired “gay French King” bit

…students weren’t exactly thrilled with his comments. One San Diego State University student penned an open letter to Seinfeld, stating, “We college students are politically correct. We will call out sexism and racism if we hear it. But if you’re going to come to my college and perform in front of me, be prepared to write up a set that doesn’t just offend me, but has something to say.” 

So now, Seinfeld will go once more unto the breach of an audience made up of people under 25. Hopefully his commencement speech goes smoother than the one delivered by his fellow college-phobe Bill Maher. 

You (yes, you) should follow JM on Twitter (if it still exists by the time you’re reading this). 


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