Surgeon General Jerome Adams spoke to people of color on Friday, urging them to follow safety guidelines to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
“Do it for your Abuela, do it for your Grandaddy, do it for your Big Momma, do it for your Pop Pop,” he said.
That language immediately triggered PBS reporter Yamiche Alcindor, who said that the language was offensive.
“There are some people online that are already offended by that language,” she said later in the briefing.
“I use the language that is used in my family,” Adams replied, noting that his own family used the terms “Grandaddy” and “Big Mama.”
“That was not meant to be offensive. That’s the language that I use and they use,” he added.
Dr. Anthony Fauci also stood up and defended Adams’ choice of language.
“I know Jerome personally and I can just testify that he made not even a hint of being offensive with that comment, I thought that was appropriate,” Fauci said.