John Roberts’ commencement speech

US Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts recently gave the commencement speech at his son’s 9th grade commencement.

It’s a very strong speech overall, and the excerpt below is excellent:

“From time to time in the years to come, I hope that you will be treated unfairly so that you will come to know the value of justice.

I hope that you will suffer betrayal because that will teach you the importance of loyalty.

Sorry to say but I hope that you will be lonely from time to time so that you don’t take friends for granted.

I wish you bad luck again from time to time so that you will be conscious of the role of chance in life, and understand that your success is not completely deserved and that the failure of others is not completely deserved either.

And when you lose as you will from time to time, I hope every now and then your opponent will gloat over your failure. It is a way for you to understand the importance of sportsmanship.

I hope you will be ignored so you know the importance of listening to others.

And I hope that you will have just enough pain to learn compassion.

Whether I wish these things or not, they are going to happen. And whether you benefit from them or not will depend on your ability to see the message in your misfortunes.”


Also published on Medium.