Paladino apologizes—for everything

On October 12, the same day that the entire liberal system including the New York Post was crashing down on Carl Paladino’s head for his remarks about homosexuality, and this lonely blogger was denouncing the Post for becoming a pro-homosexualist, politically correct newspaper (see this, this, this, and this), Paladino, without my knowledge, issued an apology for his remarks. The apology is not just for one unfortunate sentence that Paladino himself did not write and never said. It is for everything he said. He writes: “I sincerely apologize for any comment that may have offended the Gay and Lesbian Community or their family members.” But, of course, since the Gay and Lesbian community were offended at everything he said, this means that he is apologizing for everything he said, including his statement that children should not be brainwashed into believing that homosexuality is fine, including his criticism of Andrew Cuomo for taking his daughters to march in a Homosexual Pride Parade. Carl has thus given the homosexual activists complete control over him. All they have to do is get offended at something he has said, and he will apologize for it, no matter what it is.

The statement is a one hundred percent surrender to the pro-homosexual left, except on homosexual “marriage,” which Paladino also virtually apologizes for, by calling it a merely “personal” position of his.

This is one of the most pathetic statements I’ve seen by a public figure. Not only is Paladino unprepared to deal with public issues, he’s completely unprepared to challenge liberal orthodoxy, since, as Rabbi Yehuda Levin has said (using the expression made famous by Bob Grant), under the liberal assault Paladino folded like a cheap camera. Levin, who was involved in writing Paladino’s statement on homosexuality, has withdrawn his support from Paladino as a result.

At the same time, Paladino’s cave-in must be seen in context. The entire media and political establishment of New York State was assaulting him. Without the New York Post taking his side, as it once would have been expected to do, he had not a single public person or entity backing him up. He was isolated. So he lost his nerve and collapsed. This demonstrates how damaging was the Post’s betrayal of its long time support for the kinds of statements Paladino got in trouble for. It’s simply a disaster for conservatism.

Oh, and what about the Church? They’re supposed to have some problems with the normalization of homosexuality in our society, aren’t they? Pah. When does the American Church stand for anything non-liberal?

Here is Paladino’s apology:

I am Carl Paladino, a father, a husband, a builder and a business owner. I am neither perfect, nor a career politician. I have made mistakes in this campaign—I have made mistakes all my life- as we all have. I am what I am—a simple man who works hard, trusts others, and loves his family and fears for the future of our State.

Yesterday I was handed a script. I redacted some contents that were unacceptable. I did also say some things for which I should have chosen better words. I said other things that the press misinterpreted and misstated. I sincerely apologize for any comment that may have offended the Gay and Lesbian Community or their family members. Any reference to branding an entire community based on a small representation of them is wrong. My personal beliefs are:

1) I am a live and let live person.

2) I am 100% against discrimination of any group. I oppose discrimination of any kind in housing, credit, insurance benefits or visitation.

3) I am 100% against hate crimes in any form.

4) I am in support of civil agreements and equal rights for all citizens.

5) My position on marriage is based on my personal views. I have the same position on this issue as President Barrack Obama. I have previously stated I would support a referendum by New York voters. I have proposed Initiative and Referendum so New Yorkers can decide important issues like this.

6) The portrayal of me as anti-gay is inconsistent with my lifelong beliefs and actions and my prior history as an father, employer and friend to many in the gay and lesbian community.

I am concerned with the future for all our citizens, gay, straight, Catholic, Protestant, Jewish and Muslim and Agnostic. Although I am not perfect I do admit my mistakes. I will reach out to leaders of the gay community to educate me on how to better represent my support for the rights of all citizens. If elected as your governor I will stand and fight for all gay New Yorkers rights. I ask you for forgiveness on my poorly chosen words and the publication by others not involved with our campaign of unredacted script that did not reflect my oral statement or match my personal feelings. Please go to my website to learn more detail about the issues including my staunch support for civil rights for all New Yorkers.

[end of Paladino’s apology]

- end of initial entry -

Richard P. writes:

The thing that most disgusts me about the Paladino apology is the stupidity of it. This script has played out so many times that you would think most public figures would’ve learned the appropriate lessons by now. The most important lesson once you’ve offended the lords of the PC realm is this—never ever apologize. [LA replies: This is the Larry Summers lesson which I’ve written about a great deal. If you’re going to makc a highly controversial public statement, you must ask yourself in advance: Are you fully committed to this position? Do you have answers to the inevitable attacks on it? Are you ready to stand your ground? If not, then don’t make the statement at all, because you will only be harmed and humiliated, and liberalism with its ability to suppress all non-liberal statements will only be strengthened.]

Paladino likely thought that apologizing would stop the attacks and put this behind him. But that is never what actually happens. Apologizing is a guilty plea. Now Paladino will have his remarks thrown back in his face for the remainder of his public career, and the only responses left for him will be weak and sheepish. He now appears weak to his supporters while also handing his opponents a bludgeon.

Think of the Henry Louis Gates incident last year. If Officer Crowley had apologized, there can be little doubt that his career would be effectively over by now. Conversely, consider all of the public figures who have violated the PC code and responded by performing the official Jesse Jackson groveling tour. They lost their supporters while gaining nothing from their opponents. They are finished in public life. (See Trent Lott et. al.)

It is obvious in these situations that if you stand your ground the matter will probably be dropped. The media certainly doesn’t want a real debate on things like taking children to pride parades. Once they are sure you will stick to your guns, they will change the subject themselves. That Paladino can’t see this reflects poorly on his thoughtfulness.

David N. Friedman writes:

Societal pressure is a very strong force and homosexual advocacy has the wind at its sails. Only a few decades ago, this kind of support would be impossible—as the saying goes, the “thing that would not dare speak its name is now the thing that will not shut up.”

Paladino, while applauding a live and let live attitude, is the victim of the search and destroy attitude now prevalent among the elite culture where anyone (almost always a conservative) who disagrees with gay advocacy is put into a veritable cage. Mr. Paladino, while seeking to be a governor of all its citizens, does not want to be looked at from a caged perspective. He understands himself as a reasonable, kind and sensitive person and feels the heat which suggests he is not.

Our culture is in for an upheaval. Gay advocacy does not accept the Mormons or the Orthodox Jews or Conservative Christians in a live and let live manner. They are on the march. They want our scalps—not our tolerance. They put a claim on Paladino’s scalp and Paladino allowed them to take it, because the view from the prison cell frightened him. Gays were once in the closet—now they wish to put their opponents in a closet.

Our society gives tolerance openly, fully and fairly to homosexuals. Such individuals are our friends, our neighbors and our colleagues. Homosexuals are stars on TV, Americans fawn on them and adore them. The new call is not mere tolerance, they must be equivalent as a GROUP. But they are not. And this is why there is law and the point of every law is to make distinctions. Our history has been to regulate marriage so that it conforms to societal expectations concerning this fundamental societal building block. Homosexuals are equal as friends and neighbors but they are NOT equal in terms of being mothers and fathers, husbands and wives. It is really not that tough of a distinction, and yet we shudder to make it. As homosexuals in America suffer almost nothing in truth and especially in context to how many minority groups have suffered in this great land—in 2010. When they call gay marriage a “human rights campaign” we close our eyes, lock down our minds and agree instead of saying—“wait a second”—unregulated marriage is not a “human right.”

Sophia A. writes (Oct. 13):

It’s possible Paladino might, just might, turn this situation around and come out of it with an advantage, if he sticks to his original point: that Cuomo was wrong to bring his daughters to the gay rights parade. It would be a great thing for the picture of Cuomo and his daughters at the parade were splashed on every website. Then Cuomo could be pressed on what he said, as reported in the Wall Street Journal, that gay marriage would be “a priority.”

Oddly, on July 10, 2010, the NY Times reported “Doubts About Cuomo’s Support of Gay Rights.” The article is notable for itself, but also because it states that “Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand headlined a giant rally” for gay rights. Gillibrand should be called to account for that. Of all the slippery political eels in NY State politics, she must set a record for freedom from both content and principles. [LA replies: I’m not aware that Gillibrant was previously anti-homosexual rights.]

Sophia A. writes:

I was stupid to predict flatly, “Paladino wins.” I should have said, “If Paladino can prove that he’s a principled conservative, he wins.” Well I didn’t say that and I can’t withdraw my stupid prediction. My bad! My bad!

I still think that a principled conservative could have won. But in the light of Paladino’s recent cave-in on “gay rights”, he’s proved he is anything but.

In addition to being disgusting in and of itself, his cave in is a personal betrayal to Rabbi Yehuda Levin. Of all people, a southern Italian should know that personal betrayal is a very serious thing. (I hope we aren’t so ethnically sensitive that I can’t say something like that—it is meant as a compliment to Southern Italians, who take personal loyalty very seriously.) [LA replies: it wasn’t a personal betrayal. It was a political betrayal. And don’t southern Italians, or at least Sicilians (though I would guess Paladino is Napolitano rather than Sicilian) make a distinction between “personal” and “business”?]

Posted by Lawrence Auster at October 14, 2010 11:16 AM | Send

Email entry

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):