Politics - News Analysis

University of Rhode Island Strips Giuliani and Mike Flynn of All Honorary Degrees

One of the bummer things about honorary degrees is that they are only honorary so long as you are honorable. They are not irrevocable (Earned degrees are irrevocable in 99% of the cases). Ask Bill Cosby about his experience with honorary degrees.

Today it was Rudy Giuliani’s turn, though – to be sure, this one’s a bit different. Technically, as to where things stand right now, Rudy hasn’t even been charged with doing anything wrong. From a public standpoint, Rudy’s only issue is that he had a warrant served to take all his electronic devices, and – just today, we learned that most of his messages were turned over to SDNY as not privileged (He must not have been doing a lot of legitimate legal business for his client back then).

But, other than being really sleazy and creepy, there’s no real proof out there – yet – that Rudy has done anything criminal, though that isn’t the standard for honorary degrees, to be sure.

Oh, and they also revoked Mike Flynn’s honorary degree, but at least we have video of Flynn giving some kind of Qanon pledge, and Flynn got his undergraduate degree from the Univ. of Rhode Island – they didn’t take the undergrad degree, he did the work. They did take that honorary degree they gave him. Trying to create some separation? Good idea.

URI had some bad luck giving out their honorary degrees.

The University of Rhode Island Board of Trustees voted unanimously to revoke the honorary degrees given to Michael Flynn and former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.

After reviewing the recommendation from the president, who endorsed the committee’s recommendation, the board voted to approve the revocation of these honorary degrees,” said trustees chairwoman Margo Cook.

In 2003, Giuliani was awarded the Doctor of Laws Honoris Causa based on his demonstrated leadership in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. In 2014 Flynn, a 1981 URI graduate and a three-star Army general, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters. 

“Humane.” We think we found the problem.


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meet the author

Jason Miciak is a political writer, features writer, author, and attorney. He is originally from Canada but grew up in the Pacific Northwest. He now enjoys life as a single dad raising a ridiculously-loved young girl on the beaches of the Gulf Coast. He is very much the dreamy mystic, a day without learning is a day not lived. He is passionate about his flower pots and studies philosophical science, religion, and non-mathematical principles of theoretical physics. Dogs, pizza, and love are proof that God exists. "Above all else, love one another."


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