This So-Called Post-Post-Racial Life

June 15, 2009

A Tale of Two Apologies

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — pprscribe @ 2:38 pm

“I am as sorry as I can be if I offended anyone. The comment was clearly in jest.”

~Rusty DePass, SC GOP activist and former state Senate candidate

Dear First Lady:

I want to apologize for the comment that was made this past Friday by a person from my City.   The comment was both hateful and inappropriate.  The comment has been condemned by numerous fair minded people of all races and political parties.  I want to personally express my deep disappointment that such a terrible statement would be associated with Columbia, South Carolina.

Columbia is a City of the New South.  We have a history of working across all racial and ethnic lines to seek common ground and purpose.  We take pride that our City has been held up by the noted author Richard Florida as an open and accepting City that is part of the global economy.  We have a track record of building a diverse community. In the 1960’s, leaders came together to create the Greater Columbia Community Relations Council to guide us through integration.  In the 1990’s, we filed a lawsuit to remove the Confederate flag from the Statehouse grounds.

We know that you, President Obama, and your family have been to South Carolina and Columbia many times.  Please know that we welcome you back anytime.  I apologize on behalf of Columbia for the comment that was made.  While the comment was made by one individual, we know that in this internet and twenty-four hour media cycle, impressions can be made quickly.  I wanted to state firmly and emphatically that we reject such a hateful and insensitive comment that does not reflect our City.

Very truly yours,
Mayor Bob Coble



  1. So glad you posted this! And I’m impressed that the mayor of my city didn’t mince words with his apology. Of course, he’s trying to offset the bad publicity that the incident brings to SC, but we need to let people know that this kind of racist and disrespectful behavior toward our President and the First lady can’t and won’t be tolerated.

    Comment by Qiana — June 17, 2009 @ 12:42 pm

  2. During the election there was another slur against Michelle. I wrote a post on my blog titled “Apology Not Accepted” that you might want to check out.

    I like you posting both.
    Rusty DePass said what he meant and meant what he said.
    Mayor Bob Cobble was on-point and eloquent.

    Comment by Can-Can — June 17, 2009 @ 11:41 pm

  3. Yes, Qiana, regardless of the mayor’s intentions for making the apology, that was the way to do it.

    Can-Can, do you have a link for your post? I’d love to read it. I agree: When grown folks say racist nonsense like that they usually know exactly what it means.

    Comment by pprscribe — June 18, 2009 @ 10:29 am

  4. You may have already posted this, but it’s a great clip from JSmooth about “How To Tell People They Sound Racist.”

    Comment by Claudia — June 18, 2009 @ 11:23 am

  5. yeah, that non-apology was crap.

    Comment by more cowbell — June 18, 2009 @ 5:29 pm

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