This week Katie Couric became the first woman to speak at Princeton’s Class Day, a fact she wasted no time mocking when she took to the podium, noting that the Ivy League school had invited Bradley Whitford, "a fake political adviser to a fake president," before a female. Her speech was one part Republican Party roast, one part self-deprecation and one part warm advice and inspiration for the graduating class.
Afterwards, Couric posted her entire speech on HuffPo, asking readers to "please excuse some of the racier jokes — I was encouraged to be saucy and sassy!"
Here are some of her best lines:
Since I’ve been called a cougar lately in the tabloid press — today I’m very happy to be an honorary tiger! Coming here was a real no brainer! After all, I can see New Jersey from my house!
Actually, I do have a bone to pick with you. I have discovered I am the first female Class Day speaker in Princeton’s history. OMG, WTF [Thanks for the LOL]
It’s been quite a year for women. After all, a Latina has just been nominated to the Supreme Court … only the third woman in history. And I heard she graduated summa cum laude from a little school in New Jersey! Hillary Clinton was the first serious female presidential candidate and made 18 million cracks in the ultimate glass ceiling. And then of course, there’s Carrie Prejean, Miss California. No one has done more to motivate gay rights activists since Anita Bryant. [Your parents know who she is.]
When I moved to what my network colleagues referred to as Chicken Noodle News in 1980, I finally got a chance to do some reporting … and the President of CNN said he never wanted to see me on air again.
The ’80s — thank God — are long over. Luckily none of you remember them. Gordon Gecko from the movie "Wall Street" was wrong … greed is not good. We can finally burn the bumper sticker that says "He who dies with the most toys wins." The truth is closer to the old Italian Proverb that says: "At the end of the game, the king and the pawn go back in the same box."
The speech was received well by the graduates, many of them Tweeting their approval and gratitude to Couric for coming. The press, too, were impressed with her wit and candor. Lots of feminist blogs posted her speech.
I never stop rooting for Katie Couric. In her speech she said Hillary Clinton has broken 18 million glass ceilings, which is true — but Couric has shattered plenty of those herself.
Read the full text of Couric’s address and let us know what you think. Was she the right woman to make history at Princeton?