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Fox Contributor Calls Autistic Boy 'Snowflake,' Responds

Fox News contributor Tammy Bruce apologized on May 16 for referring to an autistic boy as a "snowflake" and saying that he needed a "safe space."

"I am so sorry to the family," Bruce said on air, according to Variety. "My intention was never to hurt a kid and his mom. We had absolutely no idea that Michael was on the autism spectrum."

Michael Hererra-Yee is a 10-year-old who caught some attention on May 12, when Vice President Mike Pence accidentally whacked the boy in the face while gesturing to the crowd during an event for National Spouse Appreciation Day.

Michael then followed Pence and persistently worked to catch his attention before telling Pence that he was owed an apology. Pence gave one and the issue settled -- until Bruce weighed in on it on Fox News.

"I guess we're giving birth to snowflakes now, because that kid needed a safe space in that room," the contributor said of the young boy, whom she said "pretty much stalked the vice president" for his apology, according to The Huffington Post.

The boy's mother, Dr. Ingrid Herrera-Yee, told CNN's "The Lead" that she was "devastated" when she heard Bruce's comments about her son. 

"[Michael] is a military child and he loves the White House -- he calls it 'the people's house,'" she told CNN, according to The Washington Post. "For those who don't have a child with autism, they need to really rehearse, and a lot of their therapy involves practicing social interactions."

She said that she thought Pence was "wonderful" for the way he handled it, and she was also proud of her son for "following what he's learned in therapy," at home and at school when it comes to "manners."

"It's not meant in any sort of negative way," Ingrid added, notes The Huffington Post. "Just him learning social interaction with someone else, what is appropriate and what isn't."

She said that she would follow her son's example, so she politely demanded an apology.

"Please don't use kids," she urged. "Whether they're typically developing kids -- it doesn't matter that he's autistic or a military kid. Forget all that. He's a kid. And you don't use children as examples on national television like that."

Bruce said she understood and agreed with that matter.

"As a gay woman and feminist, I have spent most of my adult life working to improve the lives of women and children and those who are disenfranchised," the conservative commentator said during her on-air apology. "I get it and I apologize … A main lesson here, no matter intent, is to leave kids out of our political discussions. We certainly agree on this."

Sources: Variety, The Washington Post, The Huffington Post / Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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