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Carroll County comissioner will not apologize for racial term.


Eddie Jewell
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Commissioner Won't Apologize For Derogatory Term

POSTED: 6:18 pm EST December 6, 2007

UPDATED: 6:49 pm EST December 6, 2007

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CARROLL COUNTY, Ga. -- A derogatory term used in a Carroll County Commission meeting is causing a commotion. Now, some members of the Hispanic community want an apology.

In a community where words are what travels fast there is one word grabbing headlines. That's because the term "wetback" was spoken by 82-year-old County Commissioner William Head at Tuesday night's meeting. There he blamed jail overcrowding on some members of the Hispanic population, referencing illegal immigrants with the derogatory term.

"It's going to get worse as the criminals move in from Atlanta and based on what I see, the wetbacks from down south, we're going to have more and more all the time," Head said.

Carroll County Latinos feel Head needs to be corrected. "I wish he had not said it," said Gyla Gonzalez with Latinos United of Carroll County. "Now that he has said it, I would love for him to apologize."

Head was out of town Thursday, but in a voicemail he told Channel 2 he has no intentions of making an apology. He said, "They are illegal immigrants, they are wetbacks. I'm sure they don't like that terminology, I really don't care. I owe no one an apology. I stand by what I said."

Even if what he said is painful to members of a community he represents. "Personally, it hurt. But I'm hoping because of all this hurt we can actually learn something from it. Hopefully he will too," said Gonzalez.

Head's fellow commissioner Randy Simpkins said he felt it was unfortunate Head made the comment but Head has been on the commission for 7 years and in that time he has never known him to be racist.

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Technically, "wetback" is a term that describes people who have done an action, like entering the country illegally from the southern border, and not necessarily a person of any specific race.

Maybe we should tell Mexico that they need to increase the ethnical diversity of those who are entering our country illegally. Maybe hit them up on affirmative action issues.

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morphy (12/7/2007)
Technically, "wetback" is a term that describes people who have done an action, like entering the country illegally from the southern border, and not necessarily a person of any specific race.

Maybe we should tell Mexico that they need to increase the ethnical diversity of those who are entering our country illegally. Maybe hit them up on affirmative action issues.

Technically Hispanics say it is a derogatory term. You never cease to amaze me.

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Eddie Jewell (12/7/2007)

Technically Hispanics say it is a derogatory term. You never cease to amaze me.

Technically Hispanics are not the Emperors of Political Correctness. They do not get to say what people can or can't say.

In fact, I would say that anyone who fully associates the term "wetbacks" with hispanics is unfairly characterizing illegal immigration with making a bigoted assumption. Illegal immigrants come from all foreign countries and ethnic background. Every latino/a that I've known personally has been here legally. Meanwhile about half of the Japanese people here that I know are here on expired visas. But I dont judge them... all of them are at least trying to get through the immigration system.

Plus I'm not a racist, like some people on here.

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morphy (12/7/2007)
Eddie Jewell (12/7/2007)

Technically Hispanics say it is a derogatory term. You never cease to amaze me.

Technically Hispanics are not the Emperors of Political Correctness. They do not get to say what people can or can't say.

In fact, I would say that anyone who fully associates the term "wetbacks" with hispanics is unfairly characterizing illegal immigration with making a bigoted assumption. Illegal immigrants come from all foreign countries and ethnic background. Every latino/a that I've known personally has been here legally. Meanwhile about half of the Japanese people here that I know are here on expired visas. But I dont judge them... all of them are at least trying to get through the immigration system.

Plus I'm not a racist, like some people on here.

If the shoe fits.

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to be honest, what difference does it make what he called someone? wetback at one time was not considered negative, but now is. okay, so someone will find a new word that will eventually become considered negative. there was a time in which the word ******** was considered technical, and not offensive. times change and the words will too. as long as people are shallow minded, there will always be racism and people who turn every argument into a race issue.

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As someone stated earlier, if you would feel comfortable in an assemblage of Mexicans calling one of them a wetback, then there's nothing wrong with the word. If you suddenly grow a pair when sitting behind a keyboard and posting in anonymity on a message board, then it's no more appropriate to call them "wetbacks" than it is to call you a "chicken ####". And you know it.

If Ol' Cooter the commissioner was commenting on illegal immigration, he should have said so. He had no idea which of the people to whom he referred was here legally, so for him to characterize the group in a phrase shows him to be an old fart who misses the good ol' days when farts ruled.

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Same Ol Falcons (12/7/2007)
I just found out today "porkchop" is a racial slur?????????????????

I'm taking up a new language because I can only say "the" in english and not have someone offended

Who gets called a pork chop? Man, I hope that's not another one that black people have to worry about; there's already way too many to be adding to the list.

Then again, that's pretty rude no matter what race you're talking about. "Look at that f#ckin' pork chop." Can't we all just, you know...

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JayOzOne (12/7/2007)
Same Ol Falcons (12/7/2007)
I just found out today "porkchop" is a racial slur?????????????????

I'm taking up a new language because I can only say "the" in english and not have someone offended

Who gets called a pork chop? Man, I hope that's not another one that black people have to worry about; there's already way too many to be adding to the list.

Then again, that's pretty rude no matter what race you're talking about. "Look at that f#ckin' pork chop." Can't we all just, you know...

when i was in the military, a couple of people had to go see the captain for saying the "N" word and were expecting to get formally rammed for saying it.......even though the context of it wasnt exactly being directed at anyone. however, the division officer that brought them up on charges referenced them as "good 'ole boys". he ended up in the brig too. doesnt really matter what you say, or sometimes even how you say it.

i think people as a whole need to get over themselves. especially the guys before mentioned as it was during an active military assignment. i guess the world is doing pretty good when the worst thing you can complain about is what someone else calls you.

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3073 (12/7/2007)
JayOzOne (12/7/2007)
Same Ol Falcons (12/7/2007)
I just found out today "porkchop" is a racial slur?????????????????

I'm taking up a new language because I can only say "the" in english and not have someone offended

Who gets called a pork chop? Man, I hope that's not another one that black people have to worry about; there's already way too many to be adding to the list.

Then again, that's pretty rude no matter what race you're talking about. "Look at that f#ckin' pork chop." Can't we all just, you know...

when i was in the military, a couple of people had to go see the captain for saying the "N" word and were expecting to get formally rammed for saying it.......even though the context of it wasnt exactly being directed at anyone. however, the division officer that brought them up on charges referenced them as "good 'ole boys". he ended up in the brig too. doesnt really matter what you say, or sometimes even how you say it.

i think people as a whole need to get over themselves. especially the guys before mentioned as it was during an active military assignment. i guess the world is doing pretty good when the worst thing you can complain about is what someone else calls you.

I understand your point, but these things either take the air out of a great day or put the cap on a terrible day. I can only imagine going home after a hard day on the job, nothing going right, boss's head up my butt for everything, getting stopped at every light... Then right before putting my key in the door and forgetting about it, somebody is overheard saying "that fripping pork chop just got home." Not even knowing what it means, I'd want to get an axe and start chopping the pork that said it. It's all just unnecessary and if it wasn't hurtful, it wouldn't be said.

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Ethanga62890 (12/7/2007)
I don't get the term wetback. When they swim here, that water ain't but knee high, that aint gonna get your back wet.

Even if it was deep enough to actually swim in, your whole body would wet, not just your back. In which case I believe the terms "wetleg" or "wetarm" or "wetsternum" could apply as well.

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