Alaskan Rep. Don Young sent out a quick apology Thursday for referring to Latinos who worked his family farm as “wetbacks” on a radio show.
The Republican lawmaker said he wasn’t aware the term was derogatory.
“During a sit-down interview with Ketchikan Public Radio this week, I used a term that was commonly used during my days growing up on a farm in Central California,” he said, as reported by the Alaska Dispatch. “I know that this term is not used in the same way nowadays, and I meant no disrespect.”
Mr. Young’s exact statement, made to KRDB-FM Radio in Alaska during discussion of immigration reform: “My father had a ranch. We used to have 50 to 60 wetbacks to pick tomatoes. It takes two people to pick the same tomatoes now. It’s all done by machine.”. . .