Billionaire Robert F. Smith made quite a splash Sunday when he announced during his commencement speech that he had chosen to use his own money to pay off the student debts of almost 400 graduating seniors.
He made the incredible gift to the Morehouse College students with the hope that his generosity would be carried on down the road by the people receiving the financial assistance, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“This is my class, and I know my class will pay this forward,” Smith said.
But his generosity was not understood well by Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, who wrote on Twitter, “Billionaire Robert F. Smith's gift to forgive the student debts of the graduating class of Morehouse College was extremely generous. But the student crisis will not be solved by charity. It must be addressed by governmental action.”
Bernie’s demands tapped into the growing entitlement culture among college students who believe it’s the government’s duty to pay their tuition. It’s an increasing demand fed by Democratic candidate after Democratic candidate as they make free college and debt forgiveness part of their campaign platforms.
And then someone decided to make the same demand of Oprah Winfrey.
Oprah, who is one of America’s most well-known rags-to-riches examples, has a net worth of $2.6 billion, according to Forbes. She also gave a commencement address on Sunday, this one at Colorado College.
“I don’t know who this guy is but he sure is happy to graduate! I shook hands with all 571 members of @coloradocollege's Class of 2019 and gave them a copy of The Path Made Clear,” she captioned an Instagram photo taken by the Colorado Springs Gazette.
One of her Instagram followers snidely replied that Oprah “should have paid off their student debt” instead of giving the graduates her book, Fox News reported.
That’s when Oprah hit her critic with a double barrel of truth.
She replied by telling her ignorant follower that she had already given $13 million in college scholarships. On top of that, she personally “put over 400 men” through the historically black, all-male Morehouse College in Atlanta.
Other followers pointed out that Oprah has earned her wealth and can do with it what she wants.
“Just because you are wealthy you are not obligated to give,” wrote Se-Se Yennes. “We can all give one dollar at a time. It’s rude for people to put it on others. Oprah has gone above and beyond. She ask for nothing in return.”
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