After millions of French citizens and more than 40 world leaders marched in anti-terrorism protests in Paris on Sunday, critics lambasted President Barack Obama for not only skipping the event, but declining to send a high-level administrator to represent the United States.
By Monday afternoon, the White House broke down and apologized. "I think it's fair to say we should have sent someone with a higher profile," Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters.
This Friday, however, Secretary of State John Kerry attempted to apologize to France in his own special way. In addition to traveling to France to "share a big hug" (his actual words) with America's oldest ally, Kerry had singer-songwriter James Taylor perform his classic "You've Got a Friend" at a Paris press conference.
"When you're down and troubled and you need some loving care, and nothing, oh, nothing is going right," Taylor crooned, assisted by Kerry and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, "just close your eyes and think of me / yes, and soon I will be there / to brighten up even your darkest nights."
Yes, it's sort of bizarre, but Parisians certainly appreciated it: At the end of the song, the audience applauded.