Well, as Elton John once told us, sorry seems to be the hardest word.
Or is it the easiest?
The government has this week issued an apology for the discriminatory Dawn Raids of the early 1970s.
But what do such apologies actually mean?
How much weight do they have?
Where does this latest one leave the government in terms of liability?
University of Otago law professor Andrew Geddis spoke to Susie Ferguson.