U.S. Secretary Of State Mike Pompeo Finds Camaraderie At Texas A&M
Start writing a post
Currently

U.S. Secretary Of State Mike Pompeo Finds Camaraderie At Texas A&M

"At my alum, we were taught not to lie cheat, steal, or tolerate those who do. Then I was the CIA Director. We lied, we cheated, we stole. We had entire training courses!" Pompeo said.

642
U.S. Secretary Of State Mike Pompeo Finds Camaraderie At Texas A&M
Riley Farrell

On Monday, April 15, U.S. Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, visited Texas A&M University in College Station. I was fortunate enough to attend and ask him (preselected and edited) questions in front of the audience.

Fair warning, this article may not be your typical journalistic article that reports on political figures. There are plenty of those out there that you can and should read! But for this article, let's spice things up; I want to paint a picture of my first time communicating with a globally authoritative entity, including how Pompeo presented himself and how that presentation was received by my home.

Tone-wise, the situation felt like it had a self-conscious sense of esteem to it - likely stemming from the fact that Pompeo graduated from a military academy and was currently speaking to a few hundred people at a school with similar ties to the military.

Despite the rigid stuffiness and the irrational feeling that I was going to get sniped by the Secret Service if I even looked at the Secretary wrong, I was still excited to get in there and shake things up. Bug-eyed and buzzing with the anticipation that politics gives me, I checked in with the press and media. I was ready to absorb the experience.

Here's a breakdown of all things Pompeo-town.

First impression: as Pompeo, a sizable and stoic former CIA Director, stomped out to the podium, I couldn't help but compare him to other politicians. You see, Pompeo is not known for his glamour or his magnetism. But this seemingly unpolitical quality actually worked for this particular audience.

A strong aspect of the culture at TAMU is our lauding of the useful, plain, forthright things, stripped of the glitz and straight to the point. Henceforth, I came to the conclusion that Texas A&M is the perfect place for the relatively uncharismatic Secretary of State to directly explain diplomacy. Moreover, he urged the mini-versions of him in the crowd to pursue diplomacy and "learn how to shut up" as he did.

Relating to the presence of the Corps of Cadets on our campus, Pompeo contends, "diplomacy and military strike go hand in hand." He furthers his pitch, "the State Department has a long history of hiring people with a military background. And Texas A&M, with its great military history, could provide many great public service leaders just as West Point has done through the years."

As questions from the audience permitted, he discussed foreign policy. Everywhere from "the crisis in Venezuela" to "coalitions in Turkey" to "sanctions in North Korea" was brought up. For the most part, the audience seemed to be tracking with him, listening intently (with the exception of a couple of folks in the audience who tried to interrupt his lecture in order to inquire about immigration reform and the Muslim ban). A straight-shooter, Pompeo was received well by the university with only a few personal anecdotes and jokes.

He did, however, get some laughs for popping any bubbles of political idealism when he said, "At my alum, we were taught not to lie cheat, steal, or tolerate those who do." (Fun fact: this phrase is also shared by Aggies!) He continues, "Then I was the CIA Director. We lied, we cheated, we stole. We had entire training courses!"

I don't mean to downplay Secretary Pompeo's charm. He made eye contact with me and every other interviewer, he greeted his listeners well, he skillfully subverted complex topics, and he spoke eloquently. But if today's political commentators argue that modern public servants prioritize style at the expense of substance - he would likely stand as the model antithesis to that statement, valuing substance over style in all matters.

As his time winded down, Pompeo stated that the reason why he does what he does, a laborer in the public sector, is to help the people of the United States, culturally and economically. The State Department currently justifies its existence with its diplomatic mission to aid developing countries in their journeys to becoming stable and democratic players in both the global village and the world market.

His parting words to us were, "I know that you all have a tremendous sense of duty, a tremendous sense of service. I hope that today that you can see that America's State Department is committed to living up to those standards."

Report this Content
Featured

How Technology Has Changed Our Lives

While we are all very dependant on technology, we are losing touch with humanity.

2257
How Technology Has Changed Our Lives

If we look back on how our ancestors lived we can sense a totally different lifestyle. If they could come back and live with all our technological devices they surely would think they are in a completely new alien world. They lived such a simple life without our devices that it seems as if centuries have passed by. In reality most of the discoveries were accomplished in the past twenty years. Indeed we have assisted a total technological distortion. This change in our lives was characterized by a myriad of technological innovations, due to globalization.

Keep Reading...Show less
Sports

Why I Love Football

Why Is Football A Sport That Is So Celebrated Across The Nation?

5396
College quarterback drops back to make pass as football season begins
https://pixabay.com/en/quarterback-american-football-sport-67701/

It is the time of year when the athletic event of football tends to exhilarate fans across the Nation. Why is football a sport that is so celebrated across the Nation? Many times I have asked myself why I even love the game of football so much, especially being a female, but I came up with a few of the many reasons why football fans love the game. though this may not be everyone's reasons for loving the game, here are some reasons that I love football.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Nostalgic Early 2000s Barbies: 34 Forgotten Treasures

For all the 90's babies and their obsession with Barbies.

28910
Barbies on a display case
LATimes

With Barbie mania overtaking society with the release of the new movie, here is some late 90's/early 2000's nostalgia for you in Barbie form.

It's sure to stir up old memories and unlock some good ones. And if you're feeling inspired by a particular toy but you don't remember where you put it, we've listed where you can find one today. You're welcome.

Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

Riots and Protests rock Paris and other French cities

Crazy European Summer

1196
Riots and Protests rock Paris and other French cities
A 17 year old boy of North African origin was shot and killed by French police during a traffic stop on Tuesday. The police claimed they "feared for their lives" when the boy started driving away from them and opened fire, killing him.
Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

When DEI goes haywire

Shocking Revelation: Doctors Resort to Ethnicity-Based Prioritization in Medical Care

1352
When DEI goes haywire
In a shocking move in New Zealand, surgeons must now consider ethnicity in prioritizing patients for operations.
Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments