Thursday, January 30, 2014

#MSNBC's Apology Pathology

An unusually good post from Erik Wemple, at WaPo, "The Cheerios ad and MSNBC’s apologetic pathology":
The Erik Wemple Blog has asked MSNBC for an explanation but hasn’t yet gotten one.

Whatever the explanation, there’s certainly no excuse. The tweet in question isn’t clever, helpful or fair. It’s a divisive piece of taunting nastiness driven by a worldview that MSNBC personalities have surfaced with great regularity in recent memory, always followed by excellent apologies. After then-MSNBC host Martin Bashir suggested that Sarah Palin be subjected to an excrement-related punishment visited upon slaves, he said, “My words were wholly unacceptable,” among other very contrite things. After short-lived MSNBC host Alec Baldwin allegedly shouted down a paparazzo with homophobic language, he said, “I did not intend to hurt or offend anyone with my choice of words, but clearly I have — and for that I am deeply sorry.” After host Melissa Harris-Perry presided over a segment that mocked Mitt Romney’s family over a photo featuring his adopted African-American grandson, the host said, among other things, “So without reservation or qualification, I apologize to the Romney family. Adults who enter into public life implicitly consent to having less privacy. But their families, and especially their children, should not be treated callously or thoughtlessly.”

And now this Cheerios thing. The string of offenses raises doubts about Wolffe’s claim that the tweet from last night doesn’t reflect “who we are at msnbc.” Rather, the tweet appears to a careful observer to define precisely what MSNBC is becoming: A place that offends and apologizes with equal vigor.

The Erik Wemple Blog supports media organizations that muster strong apologies. Too often, mistakes are followed by stonewalling and a failure to repent. Apologies can be an important measure of accountability. Yet this string of meae culpae suggests that the apology may be morphing into an enabling device for the network’s tendentious and divisive attitudes. Sometimes a bad tweet represents the errant and unrepresentative thoughts of some employee managing the social-media accounts. And sometimes it represents institutional ... mores and prejudices.
And don't miss Dan Riehl's excellent aggregation, "In Leftist terms, MSNBC should be officially labeled a “Hate Network” – Over 100 examples."

It truly is a "hate network," and clearly instills in its viewers a despicable racist, eliminationist hatred. Like Walter James Casper III, who's a huge fan of MSNBC's pathological hate. (Well, Repsac's a pathological hater, but we've been there before.)

PREVIOUSLY: "MSNBC President Phil Griffin Apologizes to Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus." Also, ".@MSNBC Takes Down Racist Hate-Tweet Attacking Conservatives Over New Biracial Cheerios Commercial."