Forgiveness

By
Real Estate Agent with Galleria International Realty
One of the wonderful traits of Americans (and to some extent humanity as a whole) is our ability to forgive those who transgress.  How many entertainers have screwed up and apologized?  We forgive them.  How many politicians?  We forgive them.  Evangelicals mess up and are forgiven.  We as a people understand that we aren't without flaw.  If one errs, apologizes and asks for a do-over, we often allow it.  That's truly a great thing.
 
It came as a big surprise to me the other day when I read a comment by AR member Jason Sardi in which he acknowledged he got booted off AR earlier.  I have read a number of his blogs on mortgages and scenarios and the guy is on top of his game, I really like the way he thinks.  Apparently he pulled a stunt that didn't go as he planned and he was booted.  So what did Jason do?  He apologized to those involved and wrote a humbling letter to AR, who in turn did what we like to do: they forgave him.  His membership was reinstated.  In the aftermath of Bill Burress being terminated from AR, another member Hugh Krone wrote a blog that was not the kindest.  The next day he contacted AR directly to apologize for his tone and wrote a public one as well.  Without a doubt both of these gentlemen exhibited class through their actions after the initial transgressions.   
 
This brings me forward to the purpose of this post.  Upon the termination of Bill Burress a number of  friends and fans have rallied to have him reinstated on AR.  That is a sign of loyalty and it's good to have friends willing to stick up for you.  But people are looking for forgiveness without acknowledgment of error.  Forgiveness follows apology and there hasn't even been anyone willing to stand up and say he was wrong.  I commented in A DARK DAY ON ACTIVE RAIN that:  What I would like to see is a friend/fan/supporter of Bill actually stand up and say that his comment was inappropriate or distasteful - because it was. 
People do or say things that we shouldn't have, we all do.  What happens afterwards shows one's character.  A person with strong character will call it out for what it is.  But no one stood up.  Instead we've endured 4 days of how great he is, how unfair AR is, how innocuous the comment was, etc, etc.  The only thing  we haven't received is an apology.  It doesn't matter whether or not he thinks it's offensive, the fact is it IS - and many people have said it is.  "I've heard worse on AR and those people didn't get terminated"......if it's offensive, it's offensive, case closed.  That's like being stopped for doing 85 in a 40 and your defense is, "But I saw someone else going 90".  One friend of his commented that he was not warned and that if he had been, he would have removed the comment.  That's missing the point - if it was just about removing the comment, I would have done so myself.  No, it's about acknowledgement that such a comment is hateful (or at least distasteful).  Others have said he's just direct; 'direct' is not defined as 'offensive' so that doesn't quite fly either.   
 
I wanted to see one person say that the comments were offensive and my intent was to contact AR directly to argue for his reinstatement.  At the time I did not know he'd had numerous warnings, I thought it was based simply on his comment on my blog.  While highly inappropriate, I did not deem it enough to terminate his account so I was willing to go to bat for him.  Yes, the Bill Burress a few claim is not hateful and who founded Silent Majority which alludes to standing for freedom of speech (though he routinely calls gays 'sodomites' and changed settings on SM to prevent me and a few others from posting in the group).  But my incentive to ask a favor on his behalf is lessened when his thoughtless actions are deemed acceptable and any chance supporters had with AR is pretty much gone now.  Instead of appropriate conflict resolution a course of indignance was charted.  We are a very forgiving people, but alas, the road to forgiveness is rarely traversed without apology.

Comments (72)

Jason Sardi
Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina - Charlotte, NC
Your Agent for Life

I'm Vulcan ...

Peace be with all of you.

May 30, 2008 08:14 AM
Inna Hardison
ha media group - Orlando, FL
Wordpress for Real Estate & Design, Print HaMedia Group

Simon: I put Eptosian (cute:-)

Sardi: can't say i am surprised... Those ears, man! (you are not ear-sensitive, are you?)

May 30, 2008 08:17 AM
Simon Conway
Orlando Area Real Estate Services - Orlando, FL

Sardi!! You are a FAKE Vulcan! The greeting is "live long and prosper" so I think you might be a Romulan posing as a Vulcan!!

Inna - nope - that would be Obama who is ear sensitive - and before you start - nope, I'm not! :)

May 30, 2008 02:31 PM
Tchaka Owen
Galleria International Realty - Hollywood, FL

Kevin - I'm not going PC, I just prefer to do the right thing.

Terry - Thank you, I did link over and read the outside blog.  I don't agree with everything Barry wrote, ie, I don't think AR welcomes racist behavior as he alludes to.  I will say that if the pics were real, then I'm quite disappointed.

Ted - Yes the discussion was about voter preference and while I will not say Bill is racist (I really don't know the guy that well), definitions of 'lemmings' can include a negative connotation in terms of intelligence and thus his comment can be construed as shifting to denigrating to a race.  Often what is perceived wins out over what is intended.

Simon - Since I was recently judged by my pic I'm going to do the same to you....and agree that you are Alien!  :-D  I too put down 'human' a few times then realized that my race is the 200m.   Anyone questioning that entry can look at the annals of my university's track team and see I held the indoor record.

May 30, 2008 05:05 PM
Kevin Robinson
Twin Falls, ID
Fractional Developer

Kevin aint white. Good call Simon. I am proud to be American. I don't hide behind the flag Terry. I wave it proudly. All of my contact information is displayed. Email me, call me, write me. I'll send you a pic if you want it.

It always makes me laugh when people say, " you are not ...., so how would you know what is offensive?." Like I said, then we can all only know what is offensive to our own race, sex, religion, height, weight, morals, background, etc. That list gets awfully long and absurd. We would be very limited in what we can comment on. If I call a short person "shorty", can anyone that is not short understand it may be offensive to them? Is it only offensive if they have been oppressed? What about a successful short person? How about a successful black person? Are they suppressed?

I have a friend (I know that may surprise you that I have a friend) who is black. Very successful. Runs in pretty high circles- cocktail parties, etc. Lots of journalists and writers. He told me that he can find out who is racist really fast. He simply tells a really stupid, unfunny joke.  He feels that the people who laugh at his extrememly stupid, non-funny jokes are racist. As he says " they don't want to piss off the black man". He would rather have them say "that was a stupid joke". The most racist people are afraid to do that because they might get in trouble. It is not PC to do that.

His point is that racist types are afraid to say a black man is wrong- in public anyways. I have thought about this and am starting to think that some in our community are under the impression that a black man cannot be wrong. And even if he is, it is wrong to point it out because he may have been oppressed. Is a white person who has been oppressed always right? Can I accidentally insult a white person who has been oppressed? Can I accidentally insult a black person who has not been oppressed (by their own admission)?

 

TO- I used to hold my college outdoor 800m record. Some young punk broke it a few years back (1989 I think). Darn kids. What years did you run?

May 31, 2008 04:09 AM
Jason Sardi
Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina - Charlotte, NC
Your Agent for Life
May 31, 2008 04:15 AM
Tchaka Owen
Galleria International Realty - Hollywood, FL

Kevin - I graduated college in '90 but ran through '91 due to NCAA eligibility.  Here's something you'll appreciate:  my training partner in Spring '93 was Paul Ereng. 

Jun 01, 2008 03:31 PM
Dionne Morgan
Realty World Solano Realty - Vallejo, CA
Broker REALTOR ,GRI, e-PRO

Tachaka, Chris Fisher said it pure and simply:

Bill (according to AR officials) had been warned many times, did not control his behavior, and finally was removed.  We need to let it go.  He is not a martyr.  This is not because he's a Christian.  This is because he refused to discontinue his inappropriate comments in a public forum.

Enough said!

Jun 01, 2008 04:55 PM
Kevin Robinson
Twin Falls, ID
Fractional Developer

Tchaka-Paul Ereng is a bit younger than me but I watched him run a few times. I hear he is a real fantastic guy. I trained with a guy who was Edwin Moses roomie at Morehouse. I met Edwin at a TAC meet, but he was of course real nervous and did not want to talk much.


 We'll have to talk track sometime. My wife was a Div. 1 swimmer so she does not want to talk track. My sons both play golf so they are not interested.

Jun 02, 2008 03:30 AM
Tchaka Owen
Galleria International Realty - Hollywood, FL

Kevin - I'm still in touch with Paul, actually I should call him as it's been a while.  Yeah, he's a good guy.  He's quite thoughtful about things and a very generous person.  He's funny too.  I'm also convinced he's not entirely human, there must be some robotic components somewhere because he needed zero recovery, meanwhile I'm laid out in the grass praying that I don't die!  I met Edwin Moses in Sydney in 2000.  He was low key but nice......considering it was 3am in a club and I wanted his autograph and a picture (which I got).  Met a few other guys too.

My ex swam briefly with Curl, I'm sure your wife would know Rick Curl.  Where'd she swim?

Jun 02, 2008 04:28 PM
Tchaka Owen
Galleria International Realty - Hollywood, FL

Kevin - I'm still in touch with Paul, actually I should call him as it's been a while.  Yeah, he's a good guy.  He's quite thoughtful about things and a very generous person.  He's funny too.  I'm also convinced he's not entirely human, there must be some robotic components somewhere because he needed zero recovery, meanwhile I'm laid out in the grass praying that I don't die!  I met Edwin Moses in Sydney in 2000.  He was low key but nice......considering it was 3am in a club and I wanted his autograph and a picture (which I got).  Met a few other guys too.

My ex swam briefly with Curl, I'm sure your wife would know Rick Curl.  Where'd she swim?

Jun 02, 2008 04:28 PM
Kevin Robinson
Twin Falls, ID
Fractional Developer

My wife swam at UCSB. I think she swam in 79-80. She only made it one season (at D-1) before a back injury. I think she may have redshirted one season also. She does not swim anymore but has coached some HS teams. I don't know if she knows Rick Curl or not. I will ask her.

You are right about some guys and robotics. It seems that the top world class runners do not seem to suffer like us mere mortals after a stressful workout.

So you were a 200 guy. Did you also run 100 and 400? Any relays? Was your school D-1? I was down at the D-3 level. Played football and ran track.

Jun 03, 2008 02:54 AM
Betina Foreman
WJK Realty - Austin, TX
Realtor, C.N.E., with WJK REALTY

I am glad to see AR has the ability to forgive people for making mistakes and being human. I think it was only right that the offenders apologized and got their act together.

Feb 09, 2009 12:39 AM
John Hersey
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homesale Realty - York, PA
e-PRO Realtor

Betina,

Just so you know.  Bill Burress was never allowed back on.

Feb 25, 2009 04:21 AM
Jason Sardi
Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina - Charlotte, NC
Your Agent for Life

This thing is unearthed again:)

Feb 25, 2009 04:27 AM
John Hersey
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homesale Realty - York, PA
e-PRO Realtor

Just the facts Sardi!

Feb 25, 2009 06:28 AM
Tchaka Owen
Galleria International Realty - Hollywood, FL

It's like Tutenkhamun.

Feb 25, 2009 06:40 AM
Jason Sardi
Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina - Charlotte, NC
Your Agent for Life

Tchaka - I just wanted to say, "I forgive you."

Apr 24, 2009 07:41 AM
Laura Higgins
ERA Advantage Realty - Sebring, FL

Tchaka,

I did not read the post which you are referencing but I do think that especially now in a country with so many who are angry, it is a good time for people to treat others with kindness.

 

May 19, 2009 09:50 PM
SEO Expert: Michael George
Phoenix, AZ
Real Estate and Law Firm SEO

Excellent point Tchaka--  forgiveness follows apologies.  Some of us don't know how to apologize though.  They think it's their right, as Americans, to post hateful, threatening messages.  (As long as its about Obama, it's all good.)

Dec 08, 2009 07:00 AM