Friday, February 12, 2021

Our Bad


This is not an apology. It is a word. It is, in fact, a sorry excuse for an apology. Depending on the tone of voice used to deliver it, this one word can sometimes exacerbate a situation rather than resolve it. I know this because I have spent a quarter century attempting to get apologies out of young people that are effective when it comes to their purpose: forgiveness. I have a pretty standard rap about how, if someone stepped on my toes, I would expect them to say that they were sorry. But if they kept stepping on my toes with the notion that simply repeating that one word each time, I would get the impression that it was there to ask permission to step on my toes repeatedly. For sorry to work its true magic, an apology should involve some sympathy and maybe a pinch of empathy. Apologies are not the place to spread blame. 

I am looking at you, Marjorie Taylor Greene. "Representative" Greene stood up in front of Congress and asked to be forgiven by explaining that it wasn't her fault. It wasn't her fault that she spouted conspiracy theories about school shootings, California wildfires, and the leadership of the Democratic Party. During a closed door session, she told Republican colleagues that it was just a phase she was going through, and House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy bought it. He listened to what she had to say and believed that she would stop embarrassing herself and the rest of the members of Congress with her wackadoodle ramblings. Kevin characterized her remarks as "an apology."

Well, let's take a look at what we know she said. Marjorie's initial remarks told us the story of someone who grew up, when to school, and started a successful business. She told us that she had never been arrested, but had a few speeding tickets. And that she was swept away by the first candidate that  she felt really spoke to her: Donald Trump. "I thought ‘finally, maybe this someone that will do something about the things that deeply bother me, like the fact that we’re so deeply in debt, that our country has murdered over sixty-two million people in the womb. The fact that our borders are open and some of my friends have had their children murdered by legally aliens, or perhaps that we can stop sending our sons and daughters to fight in foreign wars and be used as the world’s police, basically.'"

Still waiting for the apology.

She rambled on: “And so what I did was I started looking at things on the internet, asking questions, like most people do everyday, use Google, and I stumbled across something - and this was at the end of 2017 - called QAnon." And she went ahead and posted them and made videos and posted them and kept asking questions. "The problem with that is, though, is that I was allowed to believe things that weren’t true and I would ask questions about them and talk about them." And so here is her sorry: "And that is absolutely what I regret, because if it weren’t for the Facebook posts and comments that I liked in 2018, I wouldn't be standing here today and you couldn't point a finger or accuse me of anything wrong because I’ve lived a very good that life that I’m proud of and my family’s proud of, my husband’s proud of, my children are proud of, and that’s what my district elected me for."

Okay. Maybe you missed it. She's sorry that she was allowed to believe the wackadoodle stuff and those Facebook posts, she wouldn't be in trouble at all. She was just doing what all the cool kids were doing, and she just happened to be the one who got in trouble. Insert Marjorie's huff and eye roll here. See, we are the ones who made the mistake here by misunderstanding her intentions. We are the ones who owe her an apology. And who exactly is in charge of allowing an adult woman to believe things? 


1 comment:

Krs10 said...

Exactly. Who's the "allower?" If we can figure that out, we'll be a few steps further down the road.