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Lately I’ve noticed a tendency
For so-called celebrities
That I have never heard of
To apologise for things
That I didn’t know they’d done

I can see at face value
That it may seem appropriate
To say sorry
For insensitive choices
Made when times were
Supposedly less enlightened
Even if the aforementioned times
Weren’t actually that long ago
And the person in question
Should really have known better

Maybe I’m being cynical
But I can’t help but feel
That perhaps the apology
Is less about making amends
And more about raising the profile
Of someone who would benefit
From some free publicity

Equally though
I do understand
That the fear
Of being named and shamed
By social media
Is very real for some
So perhaps the apology
Is better issued in advance
It is, after all
Very important
To make sure
That Twitter likes you

And if we’re honest
Most of us could look at choices
We made in the past
And concede that some of them
Were not especially sensitive

And though I am not famous
And unlikely to ever be so
It occurs to me
That if I ever achieve this distinction
Then photos of me
At a fancy dress party circa 2005
In which I appear
To be dressed as Saddam Hussein
May well come back to haunt me
Because that could well be perceived
As quite insensitive

So, for the record
I would like to point out
That my costume
Was actually supposed to be Che Guevara
And not Saddam Hussein
But it turns out that
Within the context of budget fancy dress
They had a surprisingly similar look

29 thoughts on “We’re All On A Learning Journey

  1. A good point, whilst we are apologising, I used to just put a black shirt on and stick a white piece of cardboard around my neck because I was lazy and a priest is easy to recreate. Some may see this as insensitive but I feel I was raising awareness of the inherent corruption of the Catholic business model.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Despite mild ambivalence I’d like to apologise on behalf of the human race for all the iniquities perpetrated by, or on behalf of, any member of said human race, whether knowingly, or unknowingly, with malice aforethought, or spontaneously. I am sincerely sorry for any hurt that any member of the human race, past, present, or future, may have caused, or suffered.

    There, that should do it.

    Now, if we all gather on our doorsteps at 7pm on Thursday and repeat the above statement, perhaps we could all smile at each other (normally it would be a big hug) and get on with sorting out the world.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The distinction is almost entirely in the length of the hair. Had you consulted me concerning your costume design, which alas you did not, I would have suggested ba longer wig. All of this begs the question: is it appropriate to impersonate Che Guevera?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wearing a wig at all would probably have improved my costume but you’re right, I do need to take some time to educate myself about the appropriateness of my costume choices in general…

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I really love this poem. I am truly sick of the “eagerly offended”, as WD Fyfe calls them? Whatever happened to context? Think of how boring the world will be if everyone is inoffensive all the time. Anyway, it’s a great poem.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’ve taken the first positive step on your learning journey towards a better understanding of punctuation – now you just need to make a YouTube video expressing your regret at previous punctuation misunderstandings…

      Like

  5. Because I realized my own mistake, doesn’t that mean that I already had that understanding about punctuation, and therefore, it couldn’t be my first positive step on that particular learning journey? I think I can rightfully dodge YouTube because of that.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Now I have to take some time out to educate myself on how my hostile comments have affected other people. Thank you for the guidance and bravery it has taken to bring this to my attention. We’re all on a learning journey and I vow to be leading voice in making sure that all comment sections are respectful and safe places moving forwards.

    Like

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