Tuesday, 15 March 2011

The "If....Then..."

It seems to be the fashion lately. Some pseudo-celeb idiot publicly makes an ass of him or herself, spouts off in some form of verbal vomit while the tape or cameras are running, and is caught red-tongued. The interweb hits top gear, the Twitterverse scalds each and every megabyte, et voila-said jackass is stuck between the proverbial boulder and unyielding setting. We wait with bated breath as we know what is coming next-the dreaded and incomplete "If...Then..."

We have all heard it before. "If my words or actions have offended anybody, then I am truly sorry for the hurt that was caused." You mean you are only sorry if somebody was offended? You mean it wasn't shitty enough to cause pain to an entire group, race, religion etc? The only reason that you are apologizing is because somebody was offended? What a crock! This statement isn't an apology. It is a non-apologetic apology. It is apologizing for getting caught and called out on crappy conduct.

Look-people are fallible creatures and we all make mistakes, sometimes ugly tasteless ones. When such a thing occurs the right thing to do is to apologize, but apologize sincerely. Don't creep in the backdoor like some kind of kid trying to duck curfew. How about the following: "I am truly sorry for my words and actions. I behaved and spoke badly and my actions were intolerable. I hope that all of you can forgive my outright stupidity and callousness." 

As parents, one of the first thing that we teach our children is the art of the apology. We tell them that they can't always be right and that they can't always be perfect, and when they do err they need to express remorse fully, completely and sincerely. Many adults have forgotten these lessons or at least their publicists have. I don't think that I can stomach one more insincere crappy "If...Then..."

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