Thursday, February 08, 2007

Responsibility Revisited

After my last entry about accepting responsibility, A regular reader of Young Fogeys had this to say:

We also live in the generation of "if I" non-apologies. You know the type. "I'm sorry if I offended you." If the subliminal part of that sentence magically appeared, it would read, "I'm sorry if I offended you, you hysterical, hyper-sensitive whack-job, who clearly isn't bright enough to understand that I'm really not sorry at all." We live in the not-really-sorry world, which in reality takes not a whit of responsibility for offending, attacking, humiliating, etc. I just received one of those "if I" non-apologies last week. I was going to call the person on it, but decided in the end it wasn't worth it. It would have just prolonged the situation.
Right you are! The "if I" apology makes the person feel good about themselves without actually having to admit any culpability for their words or actions. Ranks right up there with the "catch-all" I get sometimes in Confession, "For these and any sins I may have committed, I'm sorry."

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