Fiat and Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne apologized to Italian-Americans after the used the word ‘wop’ at a press conference in January.
“I used the term ‘wop engines’ to refer to powertrains that would be used in the Alfa Romeo range,” Marchionne said in a letter to the Italian-American One Voice Coalition dated May 15. “The term was used in jest, by me as an Italian, to emphasize the uniqueness of the offering.”
The term ‘wop’ is a pejorative acronym for Italian-Americans and Marchionne said he never intended to use the term with this meaning. He also said that he understands the mistake he has made, as he had to live for several years in another country and is aware of the negative impact of stereotyping and how difficult it is, if not impossible, to indo its effects.
“We are so pleased that Mr. Marchionne has responded to our efforts,” said Voice founder and president Manny Alfano. “On behalf of our board of directors, our members, coalition organizations and Italian-Americans in general, I thank Mr. Marchionne and Chrysler-Fiat for their sensitivity to our concerns.”
Source: The Detroit News