"To talk of many things: Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax-- Of cabbages--and kings-- And why the sea is boiling hot-- And whether pigs have wings."
The time has come to address yet another nonpology. It's official (in my world): it's a word. More and more people behaving badly, more and more nonpologies taking the place of the more time -honoured and -tested apology that our parents demanded - and received - when we were young saplings. Try to teach your kids that today, surrounded by the lying sacks of examples they have before them.
Not that I couldn't close my eyes, spin around, and stab an example in the eye from 40 paces, but this one, from Toronto Catholic School Board Trustee Frank D'Amico is a gem. When faced with a dilemma of a student who lacked immigration papers applying for school (a right guaranteed by provincial law), his sympathetic response was thus:
D’Amico replied that the student’s aunt was “lucky I didn’t answer the phone because my first call would be to Immigration Canada.” He said in the email he wanted to remind her of “911. September 11, the day that changed the world” and he added “I am (sic) forward your concern to the RCMP and to Immigration Canada.’’
Classy, that. I am thoroughly stoked that my tax dollars pay this man to represent. But of course, it couldn't end there. No, there has to be the requisite nonpology to follow. Where he says the usual: his comments “may have caused some distress to families who wish to register with the TCDSB and to our school communities and I apologize.”
No, Frank. That is not an apology. That is an ass-covering nonplogy that means nothing. Less than nothing. You are practicing that awesome new form of the apology, where a leader or role model gets caught with their pants around their ankles, their mistress in their bed, or their hand in the till, and they say they're sorry if anyone was offended. If it's possible, your nonpology is more offensive than your original remarks.
I don't care if you're sorry your words hurt someone. I'm care that you could occupy the position you do, and that you made them in the first place. And lucky for Frank that he's surrounded by nonpologists, his fellow board who throw this out to him: "...one of the things that’s different about a Catholic institution is that “we learn by our mistakes and we are forgiven. I will give Trustee D’Amico the benefit of the doubt … I feel for him.’’
Lovely sentiment. Too bad Trustee D'Amico has decided to paint an entire sector of our population without dipping his brush in the same vat of forgiveness.