There's been a lot of flack over a comment made by BP CEO Tony Hayward. In a television interview he told a reporter, "I want my life back." It seems like everyone, including our President, has been using those words against him.
I just might be the only one who feels this way, but I don't think what he said was all that bad. Those words were part of an apology and Hayward was actually expressing remorse for how the oil spill had disrupted everyone's life, including his. Who among us has not made comments that have been taken the wrong way? And wouldn't most of us want a "do-over" every now and then for some of our answers or statements.
But this reaction is really just a symptom of a larger problem. Maybe it's a human thing, maybe it's an American thing, but there always seems to be a strong desire to find the guys in black hats. Are we incapable of having tragedy without having a villain? Why do we always have to start lashing out at someone as if they planned the entire disaster?
Many people forget that what happened in the Gulf was actually caused by an accident - a horrible and tragic accident that does not need to be exaggerated by looking for someone evil to point our fingers at. Mr. Hayward may not be a saint, but he's hardly a villain either.
That's my turn. Now it's your turn. To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Emailed comments from viewers:
I really beg to differ with you about the BP oil spill.
Because of the negligence on the rig, and overall greed to make more money,a very important part of our planet is ruined. If anything, we do not hold these companies accountable enough. After all, 4 of the 5 largest companies in the world are oil companies.
I just caught the last part of your remarks on the oil gusher in the Gulf. I don't know if its "evil" but there is certainly enough blame and finger pointing to go around. Sounds to me as if the perfect storm came into play here. A government too cozy with the oil industry, greed by all evolved on that well. They should pay and be held accountable for what they have done, that is the only way that lessons will be learned. My heart aches every time I see footage of birds, dolphins, crabs and any other animal caught up in that sludge. My husband and I enjoy our barrier islands and beaches almost every weekend that weather will allow and I can't help but think about how I would feel if this was happening closer to our coast. I don't blame the gulf coast residents for being mad as hell, there life is gone for who knows how long, ask the people in Alaska I'm sure they would agree. The whole thing brings me to tears every night when I watch the coverage. The people of the gulf are being WAY WAY calmer and nicer than I would be, I quiet frankly would go for someone's throat, and would have no problem blowing up something (unoccupied) that I could get to. I have not shopped or stopped in a BP store since this has happen I encourage everyone to do the same. its the only way we can teach them a lesson. This catastrophe will be with us for a long long time and it was all created by greed and indifference, it is time to stop that crap, we need to get off oil no matter how painful it is, how much of this beautiful and wondrous earth are we will to loose?
You picked the wrong person to defend in BP's CEO. He's the one who signs off on decision-making in that corporation, and their decisions were playing Russian roulette with safety, both worker and environmental. The workers on that rig knew management was gambling with safety, hence some of them were so nervous that they were preparing their wives to be able to carry on without them. Maybe you didn't see that news report. Look again, sir. That man isn't a victim here; he is a perpetrator in pursuit of maximum profits.
You do understand that it was bp rig right, ok. Well now that we got that settled how can you say what he said wasnt bad. He basically said he wants his life back, dont all the other fisherman want their lives back that they (bp) destroyed. Its redculous that you actually back him, should i boycott yall also. Bp had an unsafe rig and they new it, you mean to tell me that they didn t have a backup plan if the blow out preventer didnt work. I honestly can't think that its been this long and even more oil is leaking.
I agree. "I want my life back" was simply him expressing how this has taken over his life as well. At this point, blame has no point. There is a hole in the ocean floor ruinging our entire earth. Fix it now. Discuss it later.
I am sure that you will get a lot of flack for this article, but I have to say that I could not agree with you more. I thought I was the only one who could see the gross hypocrisy that seems to be engulfing the media. To me, placing blame solely on BP is irresponsible, outrageous, and, quite frankly, comical. Now, before I go any further, I must say that I am a liberal and a strong supporter of both the Obama administration and the liberal agenda. However, it seems like President Obama, his administration, and the media are attempting to deflect attention away from the inadequacies of both the MMS (Minerals Management Service) and OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) and toward BP. Where were the federal regulators? The regulators who are funded by US tax dollars, the regulators whose purpose is to prevent a disaster, such as the ecological catastrophe in the gulf, by performing safety checks and inspections regularly. Oh, right, they were literally in bed with representatives from BP. What a joke. The bottom line is that the federal government has nothing in its tool box to "fix" this one, therefore they would never want to seize control of the situation from BP. The fed's will just continue to blame BP, who was not actually operating the rig, but yes, is technically responsible for it, for as long as they can. Unfortunately, this administration, like the Bush administration, will use the ignorance of the majority Americans to its advantage by constantly pushing stories that portray BP in a negative way. They know that most people believe, and follow blindly, everything that the talking box in their living room tells them. We, as a nation, have got to realize that accidents happen, and unless we want to drastically change the way that we live, we will have to carry the heavy risk of drilling for the oil that we thrive on. People need to know the truth, read behind the lines, understand who should be held accountable. It's funny, I feel like a conservative, like I should be sitting next to Glen Beck and Rush Limbaugh bashing the Obama administration, very uncomfortable! I thank you for creating this forum where, for once, I feel like I can state my opinion without being berated and shunned.
I agree with you that there seems to be a push to villainize responsible parties when something goes wrong. I do feel that the poor handling of the disaster by BP is deplorable. The CEO is the target because he's in charge. Its what they pay him for.