There’s a neat trick the Left has. When you do something stupid and vile, make it so stupid and vile that it makes people uncomfortable to even repeat what you’ve done in order to call you on it. Ted Kennedy is a perfect example. It’s so horrible to leave a woman to drown in a car you drunkenly wrecked while you stagger home to save your political career that even repeating the charge gives everyone an icky feeling. Opposition to born alive infant protection laws is another one. It’s so horrible to oppose a law that would require treatment for newborn babies who survive late-term abortions that low-information voters are likely to think the charge is false because it sounds so very unreasonable.
And, here we have Martin Bashir, who said something so disgusting about Sarah Palin on Friday that I don’t much care to repeat it. Here’s the original statement, written up at Mediaite, and even Tommy Christopher had to admit this one was bad. You can watch at the link.
Here was my response on Twitter, which gives you an idea how out of line Bashir was:
.@MartinBashir, I don't wanna be too presumptuous, but I'd like you & your employer to keep me out of your slavery-themed scat porn segments
— Mary Katharine Ham (@mkhammer) November 16, 2013
Bashir apologized today, though received no discipline from his network. It’s actually a pretty decent apology, as these things go:
“Last Friday, on this broadcast,” bashir said, “I made some comments which were deeply offensive and directed at Governor Sarah Palin. I wanted to take this opportunity to say sorry to Mrs. Palin, and to also offer an unreserved apology to her friends and family, her supporters, our viewers, and anyone who may have heard what I said. My words were wholly unacceptable. They were neither accurate, nor fair. They were unworthy of anyone who would claim to have an interest in politics, and they have brought shame upon my friends and colleagues at this network, none of whom were responsible for the things that I said.”
“In the battle of ideas, America leads the world in whole-hearted discussions and disagreements,” he continued, “and these arguments can be heard on a daily basis. But what I did on Friday had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with that great tradition, and I am deeply sorry. Upon reflection, I so wish that I had been more thoughtful, more considerate, more compassionate. but I was not. And what I said is now a matter of public record.”
“But if I could add something to the public record,” Bashir added, “it would be this: That I deeply regret what I said, and that I have learned a sober lesson in these last few days. That the politics of vitriol and destruction is a miserable place to be, and a miserable person to become. And I promise that I will take the opportunity to learn from this experience. My hope is that it will renew in me a spirit of humility and humanity, that looks for the good and that builds upon the great things that this country has to offer to all of us, regardless of our political persuasion. This will be my guiding light and compass in the days ahead. But once again, I am truly sorry for what I said on Friday.”
We’ll see how long this moment of self-awareness lasts. Probably until Sen. Ted Cruz speaks in public again.
Inside Cable News tries to piece together the MSNBC standard for what deserves punishment:
– It will not tolerate someone getting worked up off air in the heat of the moment and using a gay slur in public which alienated a core MSNBC constituency. For that you get a two show suspension.
– It will tolerate someone planning well in advance to state that someone should defacate in a conservative’s mouth. For that you merely have to apologize on the air.
– It will not tolerate someone saying on air that a Democrat Presidential candidate is pimping out their daughter. For that you get an “indefinite suspension”.
– It will tolerate someone using crude commentary about a former GOP vice presidential candidate. For that you get to keep doing your show without interruption.
Remind me when a right-leaning commentator last suggested that a famous, liberal, female leader should have her mouth forcefully filled with human waste?