The public mea culpa has become a mainstay of today’s political landscape. Every perceived mistake, gaffe and slight results in demands for rebuke, reprimand and retribution.

The public apology has become that pound of flesh that activists demand as part of the leftist outrage cycle.

But to what end?

President Barack Obama began his first term with an unprecedented apology tour that still rings loudly today throughout Democrat politics.

On April 3, 2009, in Strasbourg, France, Obama told the French “celebrating your dynamic union and seeking to partner with you to meet common challenges, there have been times when America has shown arrogance and been dismissive – even derisive.”

Three days later, in a speech to the Turkish Parliament, Obama doubled down saying America was still “working through” some of our “darker periods.” These would be just two of many apologies Obama would make for America.

Obama even wanted to apologize to Japan for the attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, but the Japanese were having none of it. After all, it would also call to light how Japan never apologized for Pearl Harbor, or for their death march at Corregidor.

There exists a huge chasm between expressing regret and apologizing. One apologizes for something one did and takes responsibility. The Emperor Hirohito could plausibly apologize for Pearl Harbor, while the Japanese people could only express regret over Pearl Harbor.

The contemporary presidential debate cycle has devolved into a forum filled with gotcha questions, moral preening and virtue signaling.

But apologies?

To apologize for realizing the American dream while becoming a leading job creator like Mike Bloomberg has done is over-the-top and pitiful. Bloomberg either could not help himself, or received some poor advice when he went on apologizing for fighting crime by following the policies of Rudy Giuliani as mayor of New York City.

Under Giuliani, the city went under a metamorphosis unlike never before. Times Square was cleaned up and crime, including the city’s notorious murder rate throughout the five boroughs was noticeably reduced. No one would have predicted back in those wild days of the ‘70s and ‘80s, when the city was infamously called “ungovernable” that New York would become the nation’s safest city.

Rather than taking some pride in how successful the NYPD used stop, question and frisk effectively, Bloomberg turned it into a point of contentious apology.

Bloomberg should have embraced his record, not run from it.

Bloomberg is just one insincere apology away from earning his master’s degree in Clintonology.

There is something profoundly wrong from sea to shining sea when any successful entrepreneur feels compelled to apologize for creating a billion dollar company that provides jobs for thousands of Americans.

The collective apologies, usually offered for historic offences, are either derided or caricatured. Should the Yankees apologize to major league baseball for having won by far the most World Series titles? Moreover, should we apologize to the rest of the world for calling it the World Series, when in fact, it is anything, but a world event?

Ben Franklin said, “Never ruin an apology with an excuse.”

The problem is all too often the apology is the excuse. Once the apology is made, I am no longer accountable and doing any kind of penance – forget it. Perhaps we should be apologizing for saying or writing too much, or for apologizing sooner, or apologizing for all the wrong reasons. After all, public apologies in 21st century America are all the rage from the secular confessional of high priestess of talk like Oprah Winfrey and Ellen DeGeneres.

The plague of the Bloomberg campaign ads is now history as the former New York City mayor has conceded. The cost, according to the Wall Street Journal, was $620 million in a campaign that employed more than 2,400 people across the country that blanketed the airwaves and digital spectrum that bought Bloomberg 53 delegates, which has to be some kind of dubious, all-time, primary record.

If Bloomberg still feels compelled to apologize, please do for wasting so much money on such a futile attempt at presidential creed, and for squandering the nation’s time while doing it.

Now that would be one apology worth cashing in on.

Greg Maresca is a freelance columnist living in Northumberland County. To comment, simply email newsroom@standard-journal.com.

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