Children "starving to death" in Georgia? People living in "tar-paper shacks"? That's what Jane Fonda told a U.N., group and now she says she's sorry.
Fonda's remarks angered Gov. Zell Miller, a native of the north Georgia mountains. He fired off a scathing letter to the actress, saying her comparison was "simply ridiculous and reflects a prejudice I am shocked to learn you hold.""Maybe the view from your penthouse apartment is not as clear as it needs to be," Miller said, referring to the downtown Atlanta flat atop CNN Center that Fonda shares with husband Ted Turner.
Fonda quickly apologized. "I was wrong. I should not have said what I said. My comments were inaccurate and ill-advised," she said.
Fonda made the remarks Wednesday as she addressed the U.N. Population Fund agency in New York. Fonda was discussing Georgia's teen-pregnancy rate; she is the founder of G-CAPP, which has a goal of reducing teen pregnancies in Georgia by 25 percent by 2001.
"And it's what makes working in Georgia very interesting, because we're like, in some ways, like some developing countries," she said.
"In the northern part, children are starving to death. People live in tar-paper shacks with no indoor plumbing, and so forth."
Miller, who has fought against those he thinks have stereotyped Georgians as hicks and hillbillies, said he took personal offense to Fonda's words.
"Your remarks paint a grossly inaccurate and unfair picture of the state of Georgia. Your comments will do great harm to the state you claim to love," his letter said.