A Disruptor, Disrupted

In other odd commencement news, two days go New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a Republican, gave the graduation speech at Seton Hall University.

According to an article by Beth DeFalco in the Daily Record:

Referring to a New York Times Magazine article about him, titled “The Disrupter,” the governor encouraged students to use their education to disrupt the status quo to create change.

“Be a disrupter in the way your heart and mind tells you to be a disrupter,” said Christie, who gave the commencement speech at the Izod Center in East Rutherford. “To be a disrupter in the way your education tells you disruption is needed.”

That’s an interesting point to make. Students should feel free to be challenging and aggressive. The trouble is that disruption is about disrupting something. Being disruptive is just a tactic. What’s really important is what someone aims to change and how he aim to do it. Disruption is only a small part of the change.

Some Seton Hall students apparently listened to the governor, however. DeFalco reports that one student “shouted ‘Shut up!’ toward the end” of the governor’s speech.

How’s that for disruption?

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer