Chris Rosebrough, this morning on his Facebook announced that Chris Pinto had publicly apologized to Alan Kurschner and Dr. James White during yesterday’s Noise of Thunder radio program. After listening to Pinto’s apology, I am convinced that it was clearly a step in the right direction but that it was vague, unspecific and didn’t address what Pinto had done wrong.
Here is the audio:
Here is the transcript of Pinto’s apology:
“I want to address an issue that has occupied a certain amount of controversy in recent weeks that many of our listeners are familiar with. On august 28th, during the show in which I spoke about the faith of Andrew Jackson, that was the topic, certain comments were made after the break, and I discussed the education background of Alan Kurschner. And the fact that he has contributed to the research of Dr James White. Now without going into too many details, details which many of you are familiar with already, my comments had an inflammatory impact on some. And were taken to mean something other than what I intended and for this I sincerely apologize both to Alan Kurschner and to Dr. James White. And I want to apologize to our audience for any confusion or discord that came about as a result. Just so you know I have sent private apologies to both men, before making this announcement today. My desire is to encourage from this point forward, I hope, a God fearing approach to our discussions and I apologize for any comments that I’ve made at any point that fail to uphold that standard.”
My greatest concern after hearing Mr. Pinto’s apology is that he hasn’t specifically confessed the sinfulness of his statements but has apologized that they were “taken to mean something other than what” he intended and “caused confusion”. Rather than being a true, from the heart apology, Pinto’s words sound more like a rationalization. He didn’t apologize for what he said, which was truly slanderous. Instead, he apologized that people misunderstood him. In other words, he’s apologizing for the reaction of the people who heard his statements rather than apologizing for making them. That’s not a sincere apology but a rationalization.
To help explain the difference between true apologies and insincere apologies I would point you to an excellent blog post written by Tim Challies in February of last year entitled, Lessons in Forgiveness. In that post Challies addresses the lack of sincerity in apologies that attempt to rationalize sins. Said Challies,
Don’t Rationalize Your Sin
I try to teach my children that an apology does not include the words but or if. We do not say, “I’m sorry if I offended you.” We do not say, “I’m sorry I did it, but if you hadn’t…” We apologize sincerely and from the heart (or we try, anyway). If we cannot apologize without rationalizing our own sin, we are not truly apologizing. It is a good discipline to examine your heart before attempting to make a true and sincere apology. Do not allow yourself to make an apology that is actually an attempt to rationalize the wrongs you’ve committed. Rather, apologize sincerely and apologize from the heart, not as an attempt to clear your own record but as a step of love and obedience.
Although I think Pinto’s apology is a step in the right direction. He needs to take responsibility for what he said.