In a May 12, 2009 article on WalletPop.com, Oprah was criticized for telling the 2009 graduating class at Duke University that having a private jet is cool. The author called Oprah a hypocrite for flaunting her philanthropy, and also harshly criticized her for contributing to global warming through the use of a private jet (as opposed to flying commercial or sharing a jet). Citing the present recession at the article's outset, the author concluded by severely criticizing Oprah for encouraging Duke's graduating class to aspire to owning a jet too. Contrary to what the critic on WalletPop.com wrote, Oprah's remarks should inspire Duke's graduates to strive to achieve their dreams and also encourage entrepreneurship.
There is a saying that goes, "Necessity is the mother of invention." Often times, when circumstances fail to meet expectations, creativity kicks in and individuals embark upon paths that they otherwise would not have chosen. That scenario fits these times. The job market troubled, it is not unrealistic to assume that young people graduating from college in 2009 may turn to their own creative ideas to create jobs for themselves.
A few days ago, the local news media in my community reported that the number of entrepreneurs in our community has increased dramatically. Our community is experiencing a major job loss due to the trouble in the automobile industry. However, many local displaced workers have turned hobbies into entrepreneurial pursuits and are continuing on. Some former co-workers are forming partnerships and other displaced workers turned entrepreneurs are hiring their former co-workers in their new businesses.
Oprah's remarks to the 2009 graduating class of Duke University appear to be "just what the doctor ordered" for young people with energy to burn and creativity to spare. The present condition of the economy is just right for creative persons with the guts to follow their dreams in order to "live their best life". Their willingness to follow their dreams can result in creating jobs for others. Oprah's Harpo Productions has provided good jobs for a lot of people for many years. Also, guests of the Oprah show have been blessed by their opportunity to appear on Oprah's show. All Oprah is doing is living her dream, but her dream is simultaneously creating jobs and opportunities for other people. So what if she has obtained a private jet in the process. She has earned it and she is the right person to demonstrate to others what they can achieve when they strive to be all they can be.
By the way, Oprah has not asked the US Government for any money. She is doing fine on her own. Her work has caused the US Government to receive a lot of tax revenue, through her own Harpo Productions as well as through the persons who have become financially successful as a result of being a guest on the Oprah show.
As far as global warming is concerned…plant more trees. Oprah did a good thing by encouraging the 2009 Duke University graduating class to dream big dreams and strive to achieve them. The fulfillment of the dreams of that graduating class and others around the nation may be just what this country and the world needs.