And I’m looking at you, Breitbart.com.
There is a standard device called the non-apology. It is employed when you stand by the thrust of what you said, perhaps even all of it, and you have no intention of offering a real apology or walking it back. But some aspect of what you said has been exploited and opened you to criticism. Sometimes it’s your own unfortunate choice of words, and other times your enemies have misquoted you, taken you out of context, or otherwise construed meaning in what you said that is clearly not intended.
The resulting firestorm, fair or unfair, must be dealt with, and thus is born the non-apology. I’m not sorry, and this isn’t an apology, but I’ll make a conciliary statement that sounds apologetic just to shut you up.
The non-apology often sounds like this: “to anyone who was offended, I apologize”. The more brazen form is “I’m sorry you heard that”, the I-dare-you-to-accuse-me-of-not-apologizing version used by then-candidate George W Bush in 2000 in the Adam Clymer incident. He said “I regret that a private comment I made to [Cheney] made it into the public airwaves”. When pressed, he still never apologized, just danced a little more.
Dr Ben Carson
Hopefully Dr Ben Carson needs no introduction by now. He’s the impressively accomplished director of pediatric neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins. In other words, of all the doctors who operate on the brains of children at one of the most legendary hospitals in the world, he is the leader. His surgical and leadership accomplishments are legendary – in notable contrast to any arrogant Democrat you’ve ever met, in particular President Choom Room, who whiled away his high school and college years coasting as an entitled minority, then spent his post-graduate years agitating in poor neighborhoods and lecturing in the local college. You can just imagine what Ben Carson was doing in those same years.
Dr Carson was thrust into the public eye when, as an invited speaker at the National Prayer Breakfast, with Obama sitting at the table, he dismantled Democrat economic policies in a straightfoward, plain-spoken way, impeccably logical and devastating. He became an instant hero to conservatives (probably not particularly true for Republicans, per se), and an instant mortal enemy of Democrats and liberals.
Democrats hate anybody who shows up Obama, and they go after such a one with a vengeance. They save their deepest, most vile burning hatred, and their most fearsome retribution, for an uppity black American who strays off the Democrat plantation. Another extraordinary American, Clarence Thomas, was slandered cruelly and barely escaped his confirmation hearing for Supreme Court Justice, for no other reason than being black and not being liberal.
Oh yeah. Ben Carson is a black American. That part of the story was only necessary to tell you because of Democrats and their actions against Carson. His life story stands on its own. He’s a talented American, starting with nothing and with scant opportunity, who worked his tail off to become the best at a very challenging field. Not only that, he chose a field that gives back. Not an ambulance-chasing lawyer like John Edwards; not a horse-face jerk like John Kerry who married wealth; not an agitating fool like you-know-who. Brain surgery on children. Out of the limelight.
I strongly suspect that the people who booked him to speak at the National Prayer Breakfast judged him by the color of his skin and not by the content of his character. That’s kind of what Democrats do. Hey, a very successful African-American doctor. Perfect! It never occurred to them that he might think for himself.
The marriage comments on Hannity
On Tuesday, March 26, Dr Carson appeared on the Hannity TV show. The subject of gay “marriage” came up. Carson came out strongly in favor of the traditional family structure. The left went predictably ballistic, and the heat was brought on Cr Carson, even back at Johns Hopkins. Naturally the Uncle Tom thing came out again. There’s nothing quite like a Democrat for making logical arguments.
MSNBC and the non-apology
The left can’t come out and say “hey, we want to destroy him because he’s a black conservative.” They’re dumb. They’re not slack-jawed idiots. So their official beef with Dr. Carson was something about throwing in the term “people who believe bestiality” among the many groups who should not be allowed to redefine marriage.
Yeah, whatever. That’s what I said too.
So, Dr Carson appeared with MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell and offered the standard non-apology:
As a Christian, I have a duty to love all people and that includes people who have other sexual orientations, and I certainly do, and never had any intention of offending anyone… If anyone was offended, I apologize to you.
Apology Not, butt faces!
Left-wing media outlets were aware that this was not an apology. But certain that they weren’t going to succeed in badgering him into a real apology, they decided to declare victory anyway. So the story widely run today was that Carson had been forced to apologize for supposedly insensative remarks.
I expect savvy media types on OUR side, the side of truth, to be a bit smarter than to fall for that. We all know the game, and Dr Carson played it deftly. So the least we could do is not copy-cat the media headline slimage.
I love and respect the Breitbart team. Love their body of work too. So the WHAT THE HECK meter just goes off the charts when I see a story on the Big Journalism page of Breitbart.com titled Dr. Ben Carson Bows to Pressure, Apologizes for Gay Marriage Remark. I’m not going to critique the whole thing. Nothing particularly wrong with the text of the article. I just object that the headline loudly proclaims a Dr Carson surrender, when he simply employed the standard “If anyone was offended I apologize” non-apology dodge.
Come on, guys.