Thursday, November 30, 2017

I Fixed Matt Lauer’s Shitty Apology

I relied on the work and advice of one of my favorite writers, Ijeoma Oluo, to fix Matt Lauer's recent apology for sexual abuse and harassment:

There are no actually some words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others my victims--women with lives, careers, families, aspirations, and humanity--by my dehumanizing words and actions, and for once I am going to try to do what no other man in this situation has managed to do this year so far, which is to make a credible public apology that doesn't ultimately come off sounding like a bunch of self-serving bullshit. 

To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry. As I am writing this I accept that I can never realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC and also, again, in the lives of the many women whose mental and physical integrity I violated continuously with impunity over many years, wielding my position of power and authority in service of my own sexual dominance and gratification, resulting in untold and unknowable harm both to these women and to the contributions they could have made to their field if not for my misconduct.

Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed. I refuse to call my victims liars, because the truth is that I whipped my dick out at work on a regular basis for no good reason, and given my stature and public profile, my selfishness likely impacted my reporting on matters of national import, and, inevitably, the consequences that flowed from that reporting. 

I regret that I had to wait like a coward to be accused in order to confront my misconduct before taking ownership of it, because I was hoping no one would ever come forward and it would all just go away and I could continue to make millions of dollars a year. my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly.

Repairing the damage will take a lot of time and soul searching and I'm committed to beginning that effort. It is now my full time job, because I was deservedly fired from my other job. The one where I sexually harassed and abused women. I know there is no such thing as asshole rehab, so I will not stoop to declaring that I am going to "therapy" to make it all better. 

The last two days have forced me to take a very hard look at my own troubling flaws what I did to the women I have irreparably harmed in ways I can never know. It's been humbling. For once, this really isn't about me, except to the extent I manage to understand rape culture and how sexual harassment affects victims and the lasting impacts of my conduct on those victims. I do not expect anyone's forgiveness, and will now use the power that I previously abused to intimidate women and get off, and channel it instead, in a productive way, to somehow make sure no man acts like I did ever again.  I am blessed to be surrounded by the people I love. I thank them for their patience and grace.

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