It seemed an innocent remark in the middle of a Cinco de Mayo segment on “Good Morning America.”
Today, Lara Spencer said on Monday, is “Cinco de Drinko.”
But after a week of controversy over how the Mexican celebration was portrayed in the media – with some wearing sombreros and pretending to chug tequila – Spencer’s comment wasn’t taken lightly by Latinos.
On Wednesday, Spencer apologized for the segment.
During Monday’s broadcast, the long-time anchor wore, then twirled, a sombrero and mentioned that the holiday was the biggest day of the year for margarita sales. She also held what appeared to be a margarita.
Spencer tweeted a day later that she got a little carried away and was sorry for the segment.
The apology came after her segment, along with MSNBC’s “Way Too Early” show, caused outrage within the Latino community for their stereotypical misrepresentation of the holiday, which marks an 1862 battle victory by Mexican troops in Puebla.
The MSNBC segment had a staff member shaking maracas and taking a swig from what was said to be a tequila bottle. Anchor Thomas Roberts offered an apology on air Wednesday.
“It was not our intention to be disrespectful, and we sincerely apologize,” Roberts said. “To those I let down, or feel betrayed, I hear you and I’m sorry.”
The apologies from both shows also come days after two colleges pulled the plug on two fiestas after students protested that they were discriminatory and offensive as they were treating the holiday as an opportunity to drink Margaritas.
Alex Nogales, the President and CEO of the National Hispanic Media Coalition, told Fox News Latino, that an apology was a good initial step, but that producers also need to “get into a dialogue about how to prevent other slips.”
“The next time something stupid happens, organizations like mine will take more drastic actions,” he said. “Latinos are 17 percent of the U.S. population. You would think that they would be a lot more cognizant of where the money is coming from.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.