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CNN Remains Silent as Roland Martin Posts Second Apology Over Homophobic Tweets

In a new blog post in which he describes being bullied as a kid, Roland Martin says that he is sorry for items he tweeted on the day of the Super Bowl.

R_martinSaid Martin in the tweets:

If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham's H&M underwear ad, smack the ish out of him! #superbowl

Who the hell was that New England Patriot they just showed in a head to toe pink suit? Oh, he needs a visit from #teamwhipdatass

Writes Martin:

When we witness violence in this country against someone because they are gay, or being beaten because they are Black, that speaks to a vicious cycle that seems to be never ending.

My joking about smacking someone, whether it was in response to a commercial or food they prepare for a Super Bowl party or wearing an opposing team’s jersey, was stated in jest. It was not meant literally, and in no way would I ever condone someone doing such a thing.

As I said repeatedly, I often make jokes about soccer in the U.S., and my crack about David Beckham’s commercial was related to that and not to anyone’s sexuality. To those who construed my comment as being anti-gay or homophobic or advancing violence, I’m truly sorry. I can certainly understand how someone could come to a different conclusion than the one I meant.

I’m disheartened that my words would embolden prejudice. While public debate over social issues is healthy, no matter which side someone takes, there is no room for debate as to whether we need to be respectful of others.

As someone who has spoken out forcefully against bigotry against African Americans and other minorities, as well as sexism against women, I fully understand how a group who has been unfairly treated would be offended by such comments, and, again, I am sorry for any offense my remarks caused.

But my focus has been steadfast and resolute in being a strong voice against such issues. My conviction has always been to speak progressively on issues confronting this country, and I will continue to do so.

Read Martin's full post here.

Despite calls from GLAAD for Martin's firing, CNN remains silent.

The network should not continue to do so. GLAAD continues to believe that CNN can find responsible, diverse voices who do not have a history of advocating or making excuses for violence toward anyone. The network now has to decide. 

The time has come for Roland Martin to put actions behind his words.   GLAAD calls on him to meet with us and our partners to discuss how we can work together to address the staggering rates of anti-LGBT violence that continues to face our community today.

Feed This post's comment feed


  1. Can you imagine how unpleasant it would be to meet with Glaad after making an anti-gay comment. I think that would be a grueling punishment.

    Sometimes I think that Glaad takes things too far but then we can an awful reminder of how high the stakes are.

    Posted by: Mick | Feb 7, 2012 6:58:41 PM

  2. Unfortunately, I do not buy his version of what he says he "meant" to convey. I think he tweeted something, in the heat of a masculine sporting event, that was less than thoughtful.

    He can now SAY what he meant, but I do not buy it.

    Posted by: Jon | Feb 7, 2012 7:01:36 PM

  3. closeted marys always make anti-gay statements to win cred, then backtrack when they called out on it.

    because real straight men, who are comfortable with who they are, don't need to crack "fag" jokes to prove their manliness.

    hey Roland, Bishop Eddie long called and wants his act back.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Feb 7, 2012 7:07:49 PM

  4. The thing is, if Mr Martin did an underwear advert right about now, I'm betting the only two ranges he'd offer would be 'wet-look' or 'wee-stained'.
    He screwed up. But I actually give him props for realising that and trying to minimise the damage.
    He's still a homophobic bastard and he should still be fired - but I'd hope that he got a well paid job in PR afterwards. The guy's a natural at spinning.
    I don't believe his apology for a second, but I massively appreciate the fact that he tried to make it look sincere.

    Posted by: dazzer | Feb 7, 2012 7:10:29 PM

  5. " crack about David Beckham’s commercial was related to that and not to anyone’s sexuality"

    LIAR! LIAR! LIAR! He's a Liar and a bigot! Fire him now!

    Posted by: Guy78 | Feb 7, 2012 7:14:27 PM

  6. Yeah...that's lovely if his history wasn't so ANTI gay!

    Posted by: Utopiabc | Feb 7, 2012 7:26:28 PM

  7. Anyone who buys a word of this calculated 'apology' was a homophobe to begin with.

    His actions and words and beliefs in the past trounce this make-belief apology. He has always been against any form of gay progress, and that most certainly needs to be considered when taking into prespective his tweets.

    CNN would never, ever, ever stand for a reporter who has made a long line of anti hispanic, black, women commentary than went and made a subtle racist/mysoginst tweet.

    Posted by: Damian | Feb 7, 2012 7:29:08 PM

  8. Maybe we should just smack ugly fat little trolls.

    Posted by: Ana B. | Feb 7, 2012 7:31:17 PM

  9. I also didn't take his tweet for face value. It angered me precisley because I knew he has stated bigoted view points toward GLBT in the past, and this just fueled that. This isn't a man who was nuetral on the topic or in support of us, this is a man who's always been against our rights, vocally stated so, and then comes out with a damaging tweet during a time GLBT are already being beat. THAT is the narrative here, and a narrative CNN must acknowledge or else they are truly no better than Fox News.

    Posted by: Music4Life | Feb 7, 2012 7:31:56 PM

  10. I don't support this man keeping his job because he's so extremely damaging for black LGBT and black folks in the conversation toward gay rights. He's done everything in his power to create a division between the two groups. He's consistently told blacks to not consider LGBT rights as civil rights, and do you realize how hurtful and damaging that is to us? That of allllllllllllllllll the great black journalist CNN could employ, they knowingly get him speaks volumes on their stance. Don't ever think otherwise.

    Posted by: Amber | Feb 7, 2012 7:36:33 PM

  11. I don't know what he really meant by these tweets. It seems to me that he could have just been trying to sound cool by playing the badass. But whatever, he did apologize. Trying to get him fired, even if you could achieve this, is not a good move. The gay community is currently winning or appears to be willing on several fronts (Prop 8 invalidation, marriage equality of Washington state and New Jersey.) Now is the time to start putting things in perspective and see which fights are really worth it and which will make you seem like hyperactivists trying to silence all opposition. Jon Rauch once wrote a brilliant essay about this very problem.

    And no, I'm not saying that homophobes deserve kindness. The reason to go easy on someone like Roland is for PR purposes. It will benefit YOU to show that you're able to distinguish between an annoyance and a genuine threat. In a time of high unemployment you don't want to get anyone fired over a tweet. The public might side with him. Think this one over first.

    Posted by: Mary | Feb 7, 2012 7:38:59 PM

  12. Let's see. In a time when gays ARE being beat, dragged, killed, punched, smacked for who they are, a man who has gone on record as saying he is against virtually all gay rights across the board, tweets about beating someone who has same sex attractions, then wants us to believe it has NOTHING to do with gays.


    CNN you've have ridiculpus in the past, but're officially the most ridiculous network on air thanks to this mascot.

    Posted by: Guport L. | Feb 7, 2012 7:39:29 PM

  13. I can see where you're coming from, Mary, but at this juncture, when we, as you put it, are on the cusp of a real breakthrough as a community in mainstream society, we need to really stand up for ourselves and let it be known we aren't pushovers, we demand respect, and we aren't going to simply allow people like this throw shade on our community, and get away with it. Not when Mr. Martin holds such a public presence, being a main analyst on CNN.

    If this were a one time occurrence, maybe, people wouldn't be as angry as they are. But this is a case of repeated incidents of Mr. Martin making negative statements against our community. CNN shouldn't be supporting this speech and the attitudes behind it, which is what they ARE doing by continuing to employ Roland Martin. So, the way I see it, we're going to see what CNN truly stands for, and so far, not so good.

    Posted by: Francis | Feb 7, 2012 7:58:13 PM

  14. Francis, thank you for responding. I wasn't aware that Mr. Martin had a history of homophobic statements. That makes it a different situation completley.

    Posted by: Mary | Feb 7, 2012 8:10:30 PM

  15. History of homophobic comments? He's QUEER, dear. He's the most famous queen in atlanta and boy is that a competition.

    Posted by: Lee chevalier | Feb 7, 2012 8:25:24 PM

  16. Okay, Roland Martin talks trash about underwear ads when he has a line of signature ascots?

    Jesus. H. Christ. I am a big ol' queen, wear seersucker in summer, but even I would not wear an ascot - even when I develop a big ol' turkey neck. I think Roland's protesting too much.

    Posted by: Angela Channing | Feb 7, 2012 8:53:19 PM

  17. Sorry. I don't buy it. You need to resign.

    Posted by: dpbfeb | Feb 7, 2012 8:56:59 PM

  18. I am so sick of "apologies" that use the passive voice. Cowardly.

    Posted by: James Q. | Feb 7, 2012 9:34:37 PM

  19. As apologies go, it's pretty good.

    I still don't believe he wasn't being at all anti-gay.

    Posted by: BobN | Feb 7, 2012 10:43:39 PM

  20. @Mick - are you f'in kidding me?!

    Posted by: Bystander | Feb 7, 2012 10:44:00 PM

  21. "As someone who has spoken out forcefully against bigotry against African Americans and other minorities, as well as sexism against women, I fully understand how a group who has been unfairly treated would be offended by such comments, and, again, I am sorry for any offense my remarks caused."

    This coming from the man who LAUGHED and was in such glee on Election Night 2008 when Proposition 8 passed.

    Posted by: FunMe | Feb 7, 2012 10:50:15 PM

  22. He's not in favor of ALL civil rights. That is absolute bogus, and anyone who has seen him on CNN knows this. I watched CNN the night of the 2008 election and his comments toward the passage of Prop 8 showed an insensitive, cruel, bigot. NOT at all a pioneer of civil rights, infact, the exact opposite.

    CNN has a big stain with this one on their roster, and will always until they eventually can him someday. I hope Don Lemon helps in doing just that.

    Posted by: Michelle | Feb 8, 2012 12:41:31 AM

  23. if he made a racist comment he would've been fired immediately. the double standard is infuriating.

    Posted by: dh | Feb 8, 2012 12:43:55 AM

  24. Shame on CNN. This man should fired for his "cute" little tweets that men who don't meet his standard of masculinity should be punched or slapped. He should be enlightened to the reality that soccer is the most popular sport in the world and no less manly than football etc. He should also be made to view the video of the thugs in Atlanta beating up a young man who doesn't meet their standards of masculinity. And then he should be made to explain how an overweight middle aged talking head who wears ascots and boutonnieres is any judge of what real masculinity looks like.

    Posted by: jack | Feb 8, 2012 1:29:19 AM

  25. Hey DH, I don't have to make up stories; I am a successful and proud gay black man. I have been writing comments on this site for years.

    There is a first time for everything, you f@cking bigoted scumbag!!!

    Posted by: Mel Smith | Feb 8, 2012 2:04:27 AM

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