Apologizing In Style


We’re all familiar with the “notpology” – “I am sorry you were offended.” Or perhaps, “I am sorry you feel that way.” The essence of a good apology is that:

  • It’s public
  • It’s unambiguous
  • You don’t fucking do it again

 

This is a pretty good apology, really. (Source: DC’s Overlooked Memorials)

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It’s the memorial for Japanese internment during WWII.

You don’t fucking do it again.

Comments

  1. johnson catman says

    Maybe The Orange One and his whole team should visit that site and ponder the meaning.
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    NAH! They wouldn’t get it, and would probably want to have it removed. AMERICAN EXCEPTIONALISM!!!!

  2. says

    It doesn’t read that way to me. It sounds like something one the abusive adults in my life would have said after I had grown up a bit: “In hindsight, I admit I was wrong, BUT…”

    I look at that, and I just see the but.

  3. says

    Caine@#2:
    I look at that, and I just see the but.

    Well, maybe I am imagining, but I kind of figured that the monument was put up by people who weren’t actually responsible for it. Though that would have been cool. Imagine how badass it would have been if the president got down there with a shovel, or a hammer and chisel to carve those words into the granite?

  4. says

    chigau@#3:
    doesn’t sound very much like an apology to me

    I gotta admit I’m leaning farther and farther toward the Darth Vader school of apologetics.
    “Apology… accepted.”

    Since it’s regarding the japanese internment, I’d have preferred to see the secretary of state commit hara-kiri kneeling on the rock, but we have to lower our expectations.

  5. Jake Harban says

    Even using the most charitable interpretation possible, this “apology” is completely empty and meaningless.

    First of all, an apology doesn’t count unless delivered to the victims of the wrongdoing that requires apology. A memorial isn’t an apology at all; it’s just a public display of piety. The world is full of people who commit horrible acts, then “confess” to an irrelevant person and consider themselves absolved.

    Second, when it comes to an atrocity on the level of throwing 100,000 people into concentration camps, “not doing it again” isn’t good enough— recompense needs to be made. It wasn’t.

    In the absence of recompense, the best an apology can say is: “We were technically wrong, but seriously it wasn’t that big a deal,” no matter how it’s worded or phrased or expressed.

  6. says

    Jake Harban@#6:
    Second, when it comes to an atrocity on the level of throwing 100,000 people into concentration camps, “not doing it again” isn’t good enough— recompense needs to be made. It wasn’t.

    Yes, you’re right. At the very least all of those who implemented the internment should have been booted from and barred from further government service.

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