What remains of the “narrative” of insidious police racism lurking everywhere? Well, there’s still “a broader Justice Department civil rights investigation into allegations of discriminatory traffic stops.” So there’s that.

But it’s clearly time to apologize—for every activist and journalist (but I repeat myself) who bought into the simplistic, self-serving “hands up, don’t shoot” narrative and broadcast it far and wide based on false testimony; who reflexively dismissed Wilson’s side of the story as preposterous and unbelievable; who doggedly upheld a wider narrative that slanders police officers across the country as murderous racists.

Don’t apologize because I shamed you into it, or because I’m trying to sell you on my advice for how to avoid debacles like this in the future. Do it because if you want to hold others accountable for their action, you need to first make sure you are accountable for your own.