Rating Tiger Woods' Public Apology

Tiger Woods has issued a public apology for his "transgressions". This apology is obviously one of several apologies he will continue to work on over the next several weeks, all tailored to deal with the specific pain, financial cost and personal trauma his errors in judgement have caused. Subsequent apologies will be going out to each member of his immediate family, his Mother, the charity that would have benefited from his presence at the Chevron World Challenge, his sponsors, friends, neighbors, and perhaps many others. When you're this famous your mistakes have ripple effects that touch many more people. These apologies, as Tiger explains, are very personal and will require time. With these caveats in mind, the ONLY apology the Perfect Apology team (http://www.perfectapology.com) is prepared to rate at this point is the "public" apology Tiger recently posted on his web page:
"I have let my family down and I regret those transgressions with all of my heart. I have not been true to my values and the behavior my family deserves. I am not without faults and I am far short of perfect. I am dealing with my behavior and personal failings behind closed doors with my family. Those feelings should be shared by us alone....I will strive to be a better person and the husband and father that my family deserves. For all of those who have supported me over the years, I offer my profound apology."
With respect the ingredients of a Perfect Apology, and in light of what the general public including Tiger's fans) deserve for his "transgression", Tiger's apology is as close to perfect as we could expect without damaging the core principles and values he is trying to defend -- "the right to some simple, human measure of privacy" for him and his family as they work through this crisis. The media will no doubt continue to probe and push for additional details, and create the impression that there are many more mistakes and personal failings here, but they are all a product of the same "transgression" and do not require additional, repeated or more detailed "public" apologies -- Tiger is not a political official whose honesty is directly tied to the responsibilities of public office. Indeed, the motives pushing the media to continue to probe have nothing whatsoever to do with elevating the moral foundations of some important social debate - they have everything to do with generating press, public interest, viewership and, ultimately, money. It's not at all clear to us that these 'principles' are more important than those Tiger is defending in his apology. For these reasons, the Perfect Apology team has rated Tiger's "public" (and only his public) apology a 10/10.

Peter F. Goolpacy
The Perfect Apology Team