GOP Rep. Don Young on Tuesday shocked a group of students at Wasilla High School when he reportedly suggested that friends and family are partially responsible for suicides, which happen because they did not offer more emotional support.
The students lost a classmate to suicide Thursday, so the comments struck a raw nerve. When told that suicide stems from depression, a mental illness, Young reportedly responded: "Well, what, do you just go to the doctor and get diagnosed with suicide?"
Students were also left scratching their heads when he reacted to a question about same-sex marriage — which last week became legal in the state — by talking about sexual relations between bulls.
For those paying attention, the longtime Alaskan congressman has a long history of...saying things. Colorful things.
- Young and his Democratic rival, Forest Dunbar, had an altercation before a debate earlier this month. “He kind of snarled at me and said, ‘Don’t you ever touch me. Don’t ever touch me. The last guy who touched me ended up on the ground dead,'" said Dunbar.
- Young was forced to apologize after a physical altercation with a young Hill staffer over the summer.
- Young, discussing the changing U.S. economy, accidentally let slip a racial slur used to describe Hispanic workers: “My father had a ranch. We used to have 50-60 wetbacks to pick tomatoes,” he said. “It takes two people to pick the same tomatoes now. It’s all done by machine.”
- Young yelled at historian Douglas Brinkley during a House Natural Resources Committee hearing: "I'll call you anything I want to call you while you sit in that chair. You just be quiet...I'm really pissed right now.”
- Don Young on global warming: 'I think this is the biggest scam since the Teapot Dome."