Saturday, March 24, 2007

University of Florida denies honorary degree to Jeb Bush

AP reported that the Faculty Senate at the University of Florida voted 38-28 to deny Jeb Bush an honorary degree. The report included the text:

"I really don't feel this is a person who has been a supporter of UF," Kathleen Price, associate dean of library and technology at the school's Levin College of Law, told The Gainesville Sun after the vote.

Bush's approval of three new medical schools during his tenure has diluted resources, Price told the newspaper.

One notes former U.S. vice-president Al Gore received an honorary doctorate from Concordia University in a closed-door ceremony March 22, 2007 at Montreal’s Palais des Congrès.

IPBiz has noted the honorary degree given by the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) to Abraham Lincoln.

In case one is wondering, Abraham Lincoln received (at least) two other honorary degrees, one from Knox College and one from Columbia University.

Lincoln's letter to Columbia in the hand of his secretary, John Hay, but signed by the President, was written to Columbia's president, Charles King, on June 26, 1861, thanking the college for awarding him an honorary degree. Lincoln interpreted the award of this degree as a symbol of support and thanked the president of Columbia for the "manifestation of confidence and good will."

Thus, one Ivy League degree was bestowed after Lincoln's first election and as the Civil War heated up, and one Ivy League degree was bestowed after Lincoln's second election, and when the Civil War was winding down (Savannah had been captured). Lincon seemed to interpret each politically.


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