On Monday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk called Vern Unsworth, one of the rescuers who helped save the young Thai football team trapped in caves, a “pedo.” Today, Wednesday, Musk issued what could be construed as an apology to Unsworth on Twiter.
The apology wasn’t a public one sent to all of Musk’s Twitter followers, and therefore many might have missed it. Instead, it came in response to a Twitter user who highlighted “a thorough piece of reporting” on Quora that defends his well-intentioned but ultimately controversial efforts to help save the Thai children.
Musk replied to the tweet explaining that he was angered by Unsworth’s comments in the media which played down the importance of a mini-sub constructed by Tesla to aid the operation — Unsworth said it “had absolutely no chance of working” — and suggested Musk should “stick his submarine where it hurts.” Ultimately, Musk admitted, he should not have accused Unsworth of being a pedophile.
Musk’s apology comes a day after Tesla’s share price dipped on the news that Unsworth was considering a lawsuit against Musk, who deleted the “pedo” tweet and another that doubled down on the accusation hours after they went viral.
Despite the apology, it would be remiss of me not to point out some facts (sus): it took Musk two days to apologize; he didn’t do it directly; he took action only after the Tesla stock price fluctuated; and — finally — he continues to be scathing of media by endorsing the Quora “reporting.”
Nonetheless, hopefully, this brings closure to this sorry affair because ultimately it is a near-miracle that these kids were able to leave the caves alive as they did. All this bickering after the event leaves a bitter taste in the mouth.