Alec Baldwin has apologised for joking about sex trafficking, insisting he understands why politicians in Asia threatened to beat him over a recent "insensitive" remark.
The actor incurred the wrath of authorities in the Philippines after he told U.S. TV host David Letterman that he was contemplating paying for a "Filipino mail-order bride" to father more children during an interview last week (ends15May09).
Filipino senator Ramon Revilla, a former action movie star, was outraged by the comment, and even vowed to teach the actor a lesson if he ever stepped foot in the country.
Now a remorseful Baldwin has taken to his blog on The Huffington Post website to apologise for making light of the grave matter.
He writes, "I believe that most people understood that this was a joke and took it as such. (A dated reference, no doubt, and another sign of my advancing age.) However, I do apologize to anyone who took offense.
"The comments of some Philippine government officials come as no surprise to me, either. Even the one by a former action film star-turned-Senator who beckoned me to come to the Philippines so he could 'beat' me over my comment. Such anger and frustration about the issue of sex trafficking is understandable."
Ironically, Baldwin is already involved in an organisation, called Love146, which aims to abolish child sex slavery and exploitation.
The actor reveals his brother Stephen turned him onto the charity, adding, "I had met with (co-founder) Rob (Morris) in New York, some months before the Letterman appearance, in the hopes of helping him raise money for this group.
"Again, I apologize for the perceived insensitivity of that remark and ask you to visit the Love146 site."