Chris Hayes Explains His 'Uncomfortable' Calling Fallen Military 'Heroes' Comment Without Apologizing

As NewsBusters previously reported, MSNBC's Chris Hayes published a written apology last weekend for saying that he was "uncomfortable" calling fallen military members "heroes."

In his first Up with Chris Hayes program since the incident, the host opened the show explaining that he "fell short at a crucial moment" when he made that remark, but he never actually apologized for doing so (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):

CHRIS HAYES: I cringed when I saw the headline used to describe comments I made on this show last Sunday. "MSNBC’s Chris Hayes Feels ‘Uncomfortable’ Calling Fallen Soldiers Heros."

After playing his controversial remarks, and discussing some of the email messages he received in response, Hayes continued

HAYES: And reading those messages, I had to agree. Who was I to say who is and isn’t a hero? It hardly seems a designation that is mine to deny or even to confer, which is in a very clumsy way what I was trying to say, or at least what I wanted to discuss - not what makes a hero, or who is a hero, but rather this: we have a society that on the one hand has become comfortable with war, and on the other hand wants to distance itself from it as much as possible. To outsource it to contractors, to robots, and to the 2.3 million volunteer men and women who have been asked to serve for longer durations than at any time in history.

Our political culture sometimes engineered entirely to make us hate each other. What we're trying to do here on this show, and obviously we don't always succeed, is to talk about sometimes quite sensitive topics in good faith, to explore ideas and perspectives that don't always get a hearing, and to think through the news with understanding and empathy - to wrestle with our shared public life grounded in real experiences. We tried to do that last week. But I fell short in a crucial moment.


Notice the words "I'm sorry," "I apologize," and "I regret" are conspicuously absent from this so-called apology?

In fairness, other than the opening twelve minute segment, I did not watch the entire two hour show. It is therefore possible Hayes apologized later in the program.

However, an examination of the closed-caption transcript did not identify such.

Which makes you wonder just how sorry Hayes is for what he said.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.