Today, Rupert Murdoch issued an apology for the New York Post’s controversial editorial cartoon.
As the Chairman of the, I am ultimately responsible for what is printed in its pages. The buck stops with me.
Last week, we made a mistake. We ran a cartoon that offended many people. Today I want to personally apologize to any reader who felt offended, and even insulted.
Over the past couple of days, I have spoken to a number of people and I now better understand the hurt this cartoon has caused. At the same time, I have had conversations with Post editors about the situation and I can assure you – without a doubt – that the only intent of that cartoon was to mock a badly written piece of legislation. It was not meant to be racist, but unfortunately, it was interpreted by many as such.
We all hold the readers of the New York Post in high regard and I promise you that we will seek to be more attuned to the sensitivities of our community.
Not bad as far as public apologies go … but not great either. This apology, like many others issues the apology to those who felt offended, which is a little like blaming the victim. Just prior to that, he admits that “we made a mistake”. That is rarer! He once again “blames the victim” when referring to the interpretation of racism, and the “sensitivities of our community”. (Read: “If they weren’t so dog-gone sensitive, we wouldn’t have to be dealing with all this”)
What would I have liked to see? How about a phrase something like, “It was not meant to be racist, but unfortunately, we used images that have historically been used in racist material, and did not fully anticipate the impact of these images on our readers. Our choice of images was inappropriate.” Now that acknowledges responsibility.