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    The Du Beke non-apology (part 2)

    by Rumbold on 10th October, 2009 at 11:54 AM    

    Anton Du Beke has had another go at apologising, after his non-apology earlier this week. I don’t think he has managed it this time either. He starts off by reiterating his ‘apology’. Then he says that:

    “I feel embarrassed, I feel stupid as well; a stupid thing to do, a stupid thing to say”

    Once again, this doesn’t strike me as apologising. He is not actually saying what he said was wrong, merely that it was “stupid” (i.e. foolish) to do so ‘Foolish/stupid’ has quite a different meaning from ‘wrong’. It suggests an unwise action, but not necessarily an immoral one (e.g. “it was foolish of you to try and assassinate Robert Mugabe and free the Zimbabwean people armed only with an air rifle.”). Judging from his previous comments, Mr. Du Beke feels it was stupid because of all the fuss it caused.

    Filed in: Media, Other racists

    • Aviad
      It does sort of come across as "I feel stupid for saying what I was thinking", rather than "what I thought and said was stupid".
    • Ravi Naik
      Rumbold, quite frankly this is becoming ridiculous. The most cynic thing I can say is that he is trying to salvage his career on TV - but his apology doesn't seem like a non-apology to me. Words have different weights to different people, and let's not pretend otherwise. An apology for having offended someone and saying that it was a stupid thing to say should be good enough for everyone.
    • Raggieroo
      Perhaps you're being a bit pernickity? It's just semantics really.

      He didn't say 'foolish', he said 'stupid', which could also be interpreted as 'ignorant', 'imprudent' or just plain 'ridiculous'. It was all those things, and foolish, and wrong. But it's hard to get all that into a soundbyte. 'Stupid' isn't too bad a summary from where I'm standing.

      He also said he was 'embarrassed' - would it have been more satisfactory if he'd said 'ashamed'? Is it the same thing? Is that what he meant? I don't know.

      The point is that - unlike Carol Thatcher - he did admit he was at fault. The overall impression given is that his actions were not acceptable and he regrets them. I don't think he (or indeed anyone else associated with the BBC) will be using such racially loaded words so flippantly in the future.

      It's good that he was picked up on what he said, but a PC mob baying for blood does nothing but create a backlash, which I don't think helps anyone.
    • MaidMarian
      As long as that awful John and Edward get knocked out on the X Factor tonight all is well with the world.
    • Rumbold
      I am not baying for blood. I don't think he should be sacked, but I do loathe the culture of the non-apology, wereby people don't actually apologise. There is a form of arrogance there that really angers me. Why is it so hard to say:

      "I'm sorry. What I did/said was wrong."
    • qidniz
      Rumbold, quite frankly this is becoming ridiculous.

      I agree. Count 'em, four threads on the same faux pas? Something seems to have wound Rumbold up that he is now out-anti-racisting the anti-racists. What is Du Beke supposed to do, grovel that he is no better than an insect needing to crawl back under his rock and could people please help find it? Sheesh.
    • qidniz
      “I’m sorry. What I did/said was wrong.”

      "Wrong"? In what way was he "wrong"? That Laila does not look like a P*ki?

      You're splitting hairs. Vent your outrage once, and let it go.
    • Raven
      Rumbold, I'm afraid I have to agree with others on this one.

      Enough already.

      Though the whole affair did reveal a lot - where we are on race, on group relations, media responsibility etc. And it threw up the interesting scenario of Kelvin McKenzie opposing Sarfraz Manzoor, on Newsnight the other night, with the latter arguing that we should let it go now, and the former arguing the opposite.

      Instead we could have a debate about 'Jeremy Clarkson blasts TV over obsession with 'black Muslim lesbians'. - because they are really dominating TV these days...
    • Kismet Hardy
      Why Strictly Come here ?
      And why do you spin around?
      I'm so sorry
      I'm so sorry
      Why Strictly Come here
      When you know it makes things hard for me ?
      When you know, oh
      Why Strictly come ?
      Why vote on the telephone?
      And why post such angry notes ?
      I'm so sorry
      A aha ah ha ha I'm so very so ho ho ho ho-ho rry

      Ah, it seemed like a good idea when I started this... (sorry Mozza)
    • Rumbold
      Perhaps people are right and I did read too much into this, and was splitting hairs for the sake of it.
    • Andy Gilmour
      Rumbold (assuming that's you, and not yer evil twin?), personally I think you're entirely right, but have, like so many of us, fallen victim to "But something is *wrong* on the internet!" disease.

      It is, alas, incurable, but with careful self-monitoring, sufferers can keep it reasonably under control (although relapses are common).

    • Kismet Hardy
      Rumbold, don't put yourself down. Splitting hairs by choice (for those who shampoo anyway) is bloody difficult. And it's hard to find willing volunteers on the bus
    • Farah
      He feels stupid for saying out loud what he was thinking and believing....cant forgive what you havent apologised for.
    • Kismet Hardy
      Aaarghh. Shoot me for reading News of the World but t*ts gets an asterisk but Paki doesn't. It doesn't even have quotation marks.

      Sunny, start the "asterisk P*ki" campaign!
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