AC360° Digital Producer
(CNN) – Outspoken anti-bullying advocate and TV talk show host Dr. Phil is far from satisfied with the apology offered Thursday by an embattled local Arkansas school district official.
“This is the biggest non-apology – non-apology apology I’ve heard,” Phil McGraw says about Clint McCance in an interview that airs Friday on CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360°. “He did not apologize for what he said. He didn’t apologize for the message that this gives to children, to kids, to parents out there. What he apologized for was saying that suicide was the only out and that he’s sorry for that he said that.”
Clint McCance, the vice president of the Midland School District in Arkansas, took to his personal Facebook page earlier this week and slammed a recent national awareness campaign sparked by a rash of suicides by young people who had been bullied because they were gay or perceived to be gay by their peers.
The local elected official wrote that he wanted gay people to commit suicide, according to The Advocate, a magazine focusing on gay news. McCance promised to disown his own children if they are gay and said he enjoys "the fact that [gay people] give each other AIDS and die."
After his postings sparked national attention, McCance apologized for his comments Thursday in an exclusive interview on Anderson Cooper 360°.
"I'm sorry I've hurt people with my comments," McCance said. "I'm sorry I made those ignorant comments and hurt people on a broad spectrum."
"I would never support suicide for any kids," he also said, adding “I don't support bullying of any kids."
McCance, who was recently re-elected to a new four-year term on the board of the Midland School District, also told Cooper that he intends to resign from his elected office.
Notwithstanding McCance’s efforts to atone, McGraw says McCance should have done more.
“This went beyond just opinion,” McGraw says of McCance’s slur-filled online postings. “So it has to go to a very strong apology if you’re going to try to balance the process here.”
And McGraw offers his own interpretation of McCance’s mea culpa.
“I certainly see his apology as suggesting that he’s sorry that all of this came to light, he’s sorry that somebody called him on it.”
Anderson Cooper goes beyond the headlines to tell stories from many points of view, so you can make up your own mind about the news. Tune in weeknights at 8 and 10 ET on CNN.
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