NBC News Chides Tom Brokaw’s ‘Inappropriate’ Comments About Hispanics

“Tom’s comments were inaccurate and inappropriate and we’re glad he apologized,” a rep for NBC says

Last Updated: January 29, 2019 @ 6:46 AM

NBC News offered a terse statement on Monday after the network’s longtime anchor Tom Brokaw suggested on-air that Hispanic Americans needed to do a better job “assimilating” into American culture.

“Tom’s comments were inaccurate and inappropriate and we’re glad he apologized,” the network said, offering nothing further on the matter. Brokaw sparked controversy on Sunday after addressing the typically fraught issues of race and immigration in the United States, and suggesting that Hispanics needed to “work harder” at becoming Americans.

“Hispanics should work harder at assimilation,” he said on “Meet The Press.” “They ought not to be just codified in their communities but make sure that all their kids are learning to speak English and that they feel comfortable in the communities. And that’s going to take outreach on both sides, frankly.”

Those remarks did not sit well with liberals online and Latino advocacy organizations, who promptly denounced Brokaw.

“As Latino leaders active in politics, social justice, and the media, we could not let Tom Brokaw’s xenophobic and uneducated comments pass by without comment,” wrote several dozen prominent Latino activist in an open letter to Brokaw and NBC leadership on Medium. “We expect more from someone who has spent his career covering and studying American history and culture, which appears to have some significant gaps about the Latino, Latinx and Hispanic communities and experience in the United States.”

On Sunday evening, the anchor offered a lengthy apology in a series of disjointed tweets, suggesting he is not a frequent user of the platform.

“i am sorry – i never intended to disparage any segment of our rich, diverse society which defines who we are,” he said. “I am sorry I failed to convey my strong belief that diversity – dynamic and inclusive is what makes America.”

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