"If I've Offended Anyone…" – The Non-Apology of Van Jones
This post isn’t so much about Van Jones–this man is an embarrassment to the Obama administration six ways to Sunday, and enough has been said about him that I won’t belabor the point here other than to say that we had concerns about the company Obama kept before the election, and he’s continued the pattern of keeping company with far-left radicals since being elected–as it is about apologies. Van Jones, “Green Jobs Czar”, issued the following “apology” in response to many damning statements that he’s been found to have made in the past:
“In recent days some in the news media have reported on past statements I made before I joined the administration — some of which were made years ago. If I have offended anyone with statements I made in the past, I apologize.”
That’s not an apology.
But it’s become a popular way for scoundrels to “apologize” without actually owning up to their actions. An “apology” of this type makes certain people feel good (“off his case, he’s apologized!”) without the offender having to actual admit guilt in any way, shape, or form. It’s the coward’s apology, because it “apologizes” for the effects that one’s words/actions might have had on given individuals rather than the actual words/actions themselves. It can be seen as “apologizing”, even, for the weaknesses and hyper-sensitivities of others (“you shouldn’t be offended, but if you were, I’m sorry”) rather than owning up to one’s statements/actions.
Further, in the case of Mr. Jones, the “apology” is so generic as to be meaningless, because it attempts to whitewash the substance of the things Mr. Jones has said in the past. He attempts no explanation of the various issues raised by his remarks (and by the way, what he called Republicans is the least egregious of the issues, IMHO; I’m far less concerned that he has a potty mouth than that he has, for instance, proudly proclaimed himself to be a Communist); rather, with a dismissive wave of the hand and the “if I’ve offended anyone, I’m sorry” nonsense, he seeks to rid himself of controversy. Sorry, Mr. Jones, it doesn’t wash.
Meanwhile, at the White House, specks of dust twinkle in the sunlight, and the first leaves begin to turn loose from the trees…