Wednesday, June 06, 2012

How to Apologize

I have grown cynical about some things.  We've all seen it happen - someone famous or newsworthy says something, people react, demands for apology are made, and days later the person says something like, "I'm sorry if anything I said hurt anyone."  And here's the thing, it could be genuine, but generally you wonder if that's really code for, can we please move on and start talking about other things.
I confess I had entirely missed that there was hubbub to be had about comments made about cricket (I know, bad pop culture junkie).  But, The NPR Monkey See blog alerted me to this excellent response from Jason Alexander in which he not only apologized but explained the reasons why he thought the remark was originally a little bit funny, how he analyzed the remark after being alerted that some of his fans were offended, and how he came to realize the underlying issue that made the remark part of a larger problem.  Now yes, I am a fan of analysis (some might say over analysis) but I think what's impressive is that he has a- taken ownership for offending, and b-explained why so someone else saying hey dude, I thought it was funny can say, ah yes, I see how that might be a problem. (Or not, but all the info is there.)