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Van Horn Advocate


Friday, Aug. 29, 1997


By Mac McKinnon

Apologies not necessarily
politically correct

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Good manners, as I have noted in this space on numerous occasions, are very important in this world. Thank you, using "yes ma'm or yes sir" or no ma'm or no sir," as well as saying I'm sorry are expressions that seem to have lost a place in our vocabulary - at least in a sincere fashion.

I was raised to use those words and the yes or no ma'm or sir in particular to those older than me and as a sign of respect to others. Some people seem to not like to be addressed in that fashion as they say it makes them feel older but I believe it is simply a sign of respect, without regard to age.

While I believe in good manners, it appears our nation has gone overboard in some areas of good behaviour. Some people call it being politically correct.

My topic does not necessarily reflect on political correctness which I have written about on several instances but what I have reference to is the extensive use of apologizies.

I'm sure most people have heard of bills in Congress about telling some group the government is sorry, etc.

There was an interesting article a few months back in U.S. News & World Report entitled "So Who's sorry now?" written by John Leo.

Let me quote part of it just to give you the flavor:

"The nineties are turning out to be the decade of the group apology. In 1993, Congress apologized for the U.S. overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy in 1893. Other official regrets came from Pope John Paul II (for Catholic involvement in African slavery), Nelson Mandela (for atrocities by the African National Congress) and the prime minister of Japan (a hedged apology for Japanese conduct during World War II).

"Two years later, President Clinton apologized for the secret radiation tests performed on Americans durng the cold war and the Southern Baptists admitted their complicity in American slavery and segregation and formally exprssed their sorrow over it.
"This year, Prsident Clinton aplogized to the victims of the Tuskegee syphilis tests and Great Britain's prime minister, Tony Blair, apologized to the Irish people for British involvement in Ireland's great famine of 1845-1850."
I believe you get the idea. In addition, I should note - and I don't know what has happened to this bill - there is a bill before Congress for the United States to apologize for slavery.
As Leo notes in his "On Society" column, that a good suggested principle in this matter is that it is one thing to apologize for the sins of your own group, quite another to speak in the name of people who feel no such involvement in your sins.
There are always social transgressions going on everywhere in the world, including our own community. I've not had a part in any of these "sins" so I don't want anybody apologizing for me.
Leo asks in concluding his column, "Can we try something more productive and future oriented instead (of apologizing)? Yes, America made some horrendous mistakes. We get it. Now let's move on and do better."I concur!

Editor's Note: Mac McKinnon is editor and publisher of the Pecos Enterprise. His column appears each Friday.


Reader would like copy of cantaloupe recipe

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Dear Editor:

You will probably think I am nuts but whatever.

A few years ago I lived in Texas (Lavon) and had a recipe for cantaloupe pie. On our move to Ky. my recipe was lost. Since the best cantaloupes in the world are grown there, I thought someone might have a recipe and e-mail me a copy.


Mary Ann Buky

Pecos Enterprise
Mac McKinnon, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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