Education | Politics

Rep. Don Young criticized for comments to high school students

Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) speaks to the National Congress of American Indians earlier this year. Photo from Rep. Don Young

Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) is coming under fire for comments he made to high school students in Alaska on Tuesday.

According to The Alaska Dispatch News, Young used coarse language throughout his remarks at Wasilla High School. When he discussed domestic violence, youth suicide and same-sex marriage, witnesses say he went too far.

“At some point it was too strong,” Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District spokesperson Catherine Esary, who was at the event, told the News. “He came on too strong.”

A spokesperson acknowledged that Young "should have taken a much more sensitive approach" in addressing youth suicide. A student at the school took his own life a few days ago.

"In no way did Congressman Young mean to upset anyone with his well-intentioned message," the spokesperson told the News.

Young has issued two public apologies so far this year. He described Hispanic workers using an ethnic slur and forcefully grabbed the arm of a Congressional staffer.

Young is running for re-election.

Get the Story:
Young rattles Wasilla High students with 'hurtful' remark about suicide (The Alaska Dispatch News 10/22)

Related Stories:
Rep. Young apologizes for grabbing arm of Congressional staffer (08/01)
AFN president talked to Rep. Young about use of ethnic slur (04/03)
Rep. Young apologizes for using slur against Hispanic workers (4/1)
Rep. Young of Alaska uses slur to describe Hispanic workers (3/29)

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