So Australian news anchor John Mangos said something stupid and racist:
… Mangos reported on a Chinese lottery winner who wore a mask to remain anonymous while collecting his prize.
After the story, he said: “I don’t know why he bothered. I mean, I can tell you now — he’s Chinese.
“He’s got straight black hair and he’s got squinty eyes and yellow skin.”
And then he “apologized”:
“On the Paul Murray program last night I made some off-the-cuff remarks about a Chinese lottery winner,” he told news.com.au.
“The remarks were meant to be light-hearted and under the pressure of live TV my words were poorly chosen. In hindsight I can see they could offend and I apologise unreservedly for what I said.
“I am an Australian of overseas background myself and I am sorry for causing offence to anyone.”
Lots of qualifications and excuses here. Which kind of negates the whole “unreservedly” bit. Seeing as an “unreserved” apology would most likely follow my general rules for apology:
1. Apologize. (“I’m very sorry,” would suffice, and would serve the double-duty of signaling an apology as well as the state of your soul.)
2. Make amends. (No suggestions here–I suck at this.)
3. Don’t do it again. (Remember how your mother said you should learn from your mistakes? Actually, I prefer to learn from other people’s, as it is much less embarrassing.)
4. STFU. (The difficult bit.)
Did Mangos have it in him? He did not. In particular, the STFU part caused him to stumble. Because he couldn’t just stop while he was behind. Here’s the headline: “I’ve been called a w*g all my life – Sky News anchor John Mangos.” It’s We Heard it Before #14! Now with sorry story!
He is horrified at the racism tag after a lifetime of taunts over his Greek heritage.
“I’ve been called a wog and a dago and a spiv all my life,” said Mangos, who was the first Greek Australian to work on commercial television.
“When I was in grade 4 I had salami and skordalia, a garlic spread, on my sandwich. We had (lunch) inside because it was raining and the teacher said, ‘Whose lunch pongs?’ … all the kids pointed to me and I got detention! That’s what I’ve grown up with.”
Thanks for continuing the tradition, John. But didn’t you get that this was just some light-hearted fun?