• Paolo Octoman

An Eagle Caws for Obama Commencement


Due to the increasing severity of COVID-19, schools across the country started to close around mid-March. While most students can kick back during this quarantine, the same can’t be said for high school and college seniors, who have to now move on to the next chapters of their lives, whether it be college, graduate school, or a job. Around this time, these seniors would normally be spending their final months with friends they’ve known for years, spring season athletes would be playing their final season, high school seniors would be looking forward to prom, and we would all be looking forward to graduation. In a time of isolation, regret, and weight gain, seniors may feel that the future looks bleak.


Let me introduce Eagle Rock High School’s very own, Lincoln Debenham. He is a graduating senior who is passionate about politics (and whose favorite class is AP Government with Ms. Lee). Originally from Connecticut, Lincoln has an extensive resume of interning in campaigns for politicians such as Chris Murphy, Jim Himes, and Will Haskell among others. He originally supported former Obama-Cabinet member Julian Castro in the 2020 Election but is now supporting Joe Biden, as he is the presumptive Democratic candidate. He moved to Eagle Rock before his junior year, and he plans to attend Cal State LA to study Political Science.

Back on April 14th, Lincoln sent out a Tweet calling for former President, Barack Obama, to give a national commencement speech to the Class of 2020.



Since then, the senior’s tweet and hashtag, #ObamaCommencement2020, has gone viral, accumulating more than 222,000 likes and 45,000 retweets. Lincoln’s tweet has also been the subject of numerous news articles and reports, including some from CNN, ABC News, and The Washington Post. He has also appeared on our local KCAL 9 news through virtual interviews. Obama’s spokesperson, Katie Hill, acknowledged the tweet and said the administration was “very flattered”, but nothing else. While she didn’t yes, she also didn’t say no, so there’s still hope.


Lincoln says that he was inspired to make the tweet since the former President made his official endorsement for Joe Biden in the 2020 election. He believes Obama should give the speech “...because not only was [Obama] a great speaker, he was a leader and an icon to our generation. We literally grew up during his presidency which is why his speech would mean so much.”When I asked about any updates regarding his tweet, Lincoln said that he had “been reached out to” but unfortunately, he is not allowed to share any details about who or what. Only time will tell how far #ObamaCommencement2020 will go, but who knows, maybe we’ll be seeing the 44th President on our TV screens in June.


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