Unintentional arrogance #2

June 22, 2009

David Garret said on Q&A yesterday morning that he’d apologised unreservedly for comments which offended a parliamentary services staff member.

PAUL . . . did you make an inappropriate remark to a female staff member?

DAVID I believe that’s perfectly possible Paul.

PAUL Yes or no?

DAVID Well what’s inappropriate, Paul I come from a background – I’m probably the only Member of Parliament who has been an oil rig worker for ten years, it was a big adjustment to become a lawyer, and even bigger adjustment to become an MP, I’m on a very steep learning curve, I now understand very clearly that the kind of thing that might have been okay in a law firm in Tonga is not okay in parliament.

PAUL The perception of course of the woman obviously is that it was an inappropriate remark, Rodney Hide worked on oil rigs too but he doesn’t made inappropriate remarks. Have you apologised to the woman?

DAVID Oh I have Paul, yes, unreservedly.

PAUL Do you regret making the remark?

DAVID I do, very much so yes.

An unreserved apology and regret for having made the remark ought to be the end of the matter.

But I’m left with some questions:

What’s the difference between a law firm in Tonga and parliament?

Shouldn’t you understand what’s appropriate before you enter parliament?

If you don’t whose responsibility is it to ensure you do?

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