We are gathered here today to mourn the sad and untimely passing of the apology.
The offspring of Greek parents (Apo and -Logia), the apology is survived by two sisters (Amends and Atonement), twin brothers (Remorse and Regret), two cousins (Excuse and Vindication), and one wicked step-mother (Repudiation).
Now that the apology is no more, the simple word combination of “I’m sorry” should be remembered for its powerful ability to disengage conflict, convey courtesy and respect, and promote civil behavior among family, friends, acquaintances, co-workers, stranger, pets, and major appliances.
Because of its positive influence, the apology was fortunate to live a long life surrounded by those who were characterized as emotionally strong, confident, and likable. In its sincerest form, the apology was capable of reforming and drawing in the bitter and angry into its circle.
It is unfortunate that neglect was the cause of its demise. This resulting from the growing number of the self-centered, the greedy, the spoiled, the egocentric, and the entitled. A campaign launched by these types of people to start rumors stating that the apology represents weakness. It was an unfounded lie spread by those with too much pride in themselves, yet people fear weakness, so this lie burned through society like an untamed forest fire.
With the loss of the apology, the world we share will not be the same. Those of us who wish to partake in public activities such as movies, travel, and/or grocery shopping (to name a few) are now at risk of emotional and/or physical harm. No longer will we be able to politely request for someone to not talk during a movie. No longer will we be able to share with a parent that their child is kicking the back of our plane seat. No longer can we ask someone to turn down their loud music. We must remain silent to any unjust and unfair treatment or face retaliation from the offender by being called rude, being yelled at to mind your own business, and/or being physically assaulted.
But the good news is that it is not too late. We can bring new life to the apology by simply sharing it. Did someone catch you cutting in line? Say, “I’m sorry.” Is your roommate upset that you wore his favorite shirt? Take it off and say, “I’m sorry.” Are you taking up an entire parking spot next to your car just so you can unload your shopping cart while someone waits to park their car in that space? Move your sorry, honky asses out of the way and fucking say, “I’m sorry.”
By the power of grace and decency, let’s work together to resurrect the apology. Wouldn’t you prefer being remembered as emotionally strong, confident, and likable? It’s just two words with a very low syllabic density. And it holds unbelievable power, but you wouldn’t know this unless you use it.
Until then, we will miss you, Apology, because you brought peace to our lives.