Trump's Facebook apology for crude comments arouses disbelief

Technically Incorrect: As conservative Republicans withdraw their support, a late-night video apology from Trump is less apologetic and more defiant.

Chris Matyszczyk
3 min read

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.

Donald Trump apologizes. Briefly.
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Donald Trump apologizes. Briefly.

Donald Trump apologizes. Briefly.

Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

It was quite the status update.

But only, perhaps, because Donald Trump actually used the word "apologize" with an "I" ahead of it.

After his conversation with Billy Bush of "Access Hollywood" emerged from the archives of NBC and into The Washington Post -- a conversation that included Trump boasting that, as a star, he was free to grab a woman's privates -- the Republican nominee attempted (a sort of) damage control on Facebook.

The apology video, released late Friday night, began, "I've never said I'm a perfect person, nor pretended to be someone that I'm not."

It might have seemed strange for some to hear that the man with the best words, the only man who can solve so many of America's problems, might be less of an Achilles and more of a heel.

"Anyone who knows me knows these words don't reflect who I am," he continued. Which doesn't strain credulity but seems to snap it like an elephant chewing on a washing line.

Still, Trump did admit: "I said it, I was wrong, and I apologize."

Some might feel his apology was uttered with all the sincerity of a raccoon claiming innocence while holding a kitten carcass in its mouth.

Indeed, it didn't take long before the apology turned into an attack on Hillary Clinton and her husband.

Describing his comments about women and their private parts as a mere "distraction," he continued: "I've said some foolish things, but there's a big difference between the words and actions of other people. Bill Clinton has actually abused women, and Hillary has bullied, attacked, shamed and intimidated his victims. We will discuss this more in the coming days."

Among other things in the lewd recording released by the Post on Friday, Trump spoke about trying to seduce a married woman. And, oddly, failing.

These words were uttered when he himself was recently married to his current wife, Melania.

But it was his apparent enthusiasm for blatant sexual assault that surprised some.

"You know, I'm automatically attracted to beautiful women," he said. "I just start kissing them."

The automatic behavior doesn't appear to stop at kissing.

"And when you're a star, they let you do it," he continued. "They let you do anything." (To hear Trump's remarks in all their expletive-not-deleted glory, you can check out the recording in the Post's story.)

Condemnation was swift, especially from those of the party he's adopted. Utah Republicans were particularly scathing. Gov. Gary Herbert tweeted: "Donald Trump's statements are beyond offensive & despicable. While I cannot vote for Hillary Clinton, I will not vote for Trump."

Some might be stunned that a governor who earlier this year declared porn a health hazard had supported Trump for so long.

Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee offered Fox 13 this observation: "That was an apology for getting caught. That was not an apology for the behavior."

Still, the timing of the release has a suspicious quality. It occurred just as WikiLeaks posted what it said are emails from Hillary Clinton aide John Podesta and excerpts from Clinton's private speeches to Goldman Sachs.

Many Trump enthusiasts on Facebook -- men and women -- treated their champion's comments as nothing when compared with Hillary Clinton's alleged transgressions.

Then there was Washington State GOP Chairwoman Susan Hutchison. She told King 5 TV: "Donald Trump's comments in 2005 -- 11 years ago -- were made when he was a Democrat."

There's another debate on Sunday. I wonder who will be sorry after that. Those who watched it, I suspect.