Detroit legislator Bettie Cook Scott (D-MI) apologized Thursday after referring to her Asian opponent Stephanie Chang as a “ching-chong.”
Scott also told Chang’s campaign volunteers they didn’t belong in the country and called Chang’s African American husband a “fool” for marrying her.
Furthermore, Scott told voters that it “disgusts” her to see “black people holding signs for these Asians and not supporting their own people.”
Scott’s disrespectful comments came in advance of the Democratic Party primary for Michigan’s 1st Senate District – a contest Chang won with nearly 50% of the vote.
“[Scott’s] comments are offensive to all Asian-Americans,” Chang told reporters. “It isn’t about me. It’s about an elected official disrespecting entire populations, whether they be Asian-American, immigrant, or residents of Sen District 1.”
In her defense, Scott said her comments to Chang are “not the kinds of comments that should be made nor are they the kind of comments I would normally make.”
The comments earned backlash from more than a dozen community groups, who demanded she apologize to Chang.
Kalaya Long, a volunteer with Voices of Women to Win, described Scott’s comments as “appalling and disgusting,” especially considering the fact that Scott is black. “When you hear someone that’s a minatory and a woman using slurs against another minority that’s a woman, it’s just mind boggling and it just felt dirty.”
Groups calling on Scott to apologize include the Detroit Hispanic Development Corporation, the Association of Chinese Americans, Equality Michigan, American Citizens for Justice, and the African Bureau of Immigration & Social Affairs.
“We live in a time of increasing divisiveness,” wrote Scott in a statement issued after the criticism. “As a state representative, I should never do anything to contribute to an atmosphere of divisiveness and for that, I am terribly sorry. I look forward to meeting with Rep. Chang to express my apologies directly to her as soon as she’s able to meet with me.”
Author’s Note: This is totally unacceptable. Scott should resign immediately.
Editor’s Note: Clear case of racism, will she do the honorable thing and resign from the election? Probably not – the height of hypocrisy.