There is no right thing to say to the survivors of a loved one killed in military circumstances. It is a set of circumstances that have no logical foundation. It is a place arrived at through a series of forced choices. Yet we have a POTUS who is a true child of the television culture, but who cannot come up with appropriately unoriginal things to say. If he watches a lot of television, doesn’t he see the police procedurals where the protagonists say “sorry for your loss” and go on to the next agenda item. Why does he think originality and spontaneity are needed? The word, “condolences” is not the word poorly used, but the class of utterances that are offered as condolences are, in too many cases, poorly used. The KISS principle applies — Keep it simple, stupid!
— Kilgore Forelle