United States Representative Don Young (R-AK) may have just found himself uninvited from any future high school assemblies after giving a stunning speech that involved bull sex and comments on suicide on Tuesday morning.
The Alaska Dispatch News reported that the student and staff at Wasilla High School said Rep Young “acted in a disrespectful and sometimes offensive manner to some students, used profanity and started talking about bull sex when confronted with a question about same-sex marriage” during his 60-minute appearance. Throughout the speech, Young thrilled the audience with a number of stories — for instance, telling “a story that involved flying to Paris to get drunk.”
Then he got a question about gay marriage, and why he felt it was such a bad thing.
The congressman responded with:
You can’t have marriage with two men. What do you get with two bulls?
You can’t have marriage with two men because you get something with two bulls. That’s brilliance; that’s not a syllogistic fallacy, that’s a syllogistic stop error.
Witness say that young added something about a lot of “bullshazzle,” or words resembling the more familiar insult.
Witnesses also told the Dispatch News that Young had some pretty questionable things to say in regards to suicide as well. Young stunned the assembly, mentioning depression and alcohol, and saying that suicide shows a lack of support from friends and family.
The students and staff, by the way, were mourning the loss of a Wasilla student who took his own life the week before.
Principal Amy Sprago told the newspaper that:
When I heard ‘a lack of support from family’ and I heard ‘a lack of support from friends,’ I felt the oxygen go out of the room, but I gasped as well. It just isn’t true in these situations. It’s just such a hurtful thing to say.
Young’s spokesman doesn’t seem to see it that way; while acknowledging that the congressman could have been more tactful in broaching the subject, he nevertheless called Young “forthright” in discussing the issue:
“Congressman Young was very serious and forthright when discussing the issue of suicide, in part because of the high number of tragedies that affect Alaskan youth. He discussed what he believes are leading causes of youth suicide in our state and shared some suggestions for helping family members and friends who are dealing with suicidal thoughts,” spokesman Matt Shuckerow told the Dispatch News. “In no way did Congressman Young mean to upset anyone with his well-intentioned message. In light of the tragic events affecting the Wasilla High School community, he should have taken a much more sensitive approach.”
The congressman nevertheless felt “regret for any offense taken during the honest and spirited discussion.”