Roland Martin suspended by CNN
Accused of encouraging violence
CNN contributor Roland S. Martin, who was accused of bullying and encouraging violence against the LGBT community after tweeting on Sunday that any man at a Super Bowl party who’s psyched for David Beckham’s H&M underwear ad should be smacked, posted his final thoughts on the controversy to his website last night. “That is furthest from the truth, and I sincerely regret any offense my words have caused,” he wrote. “I have consistently said on television, radio, and in print, that I am steadfast against bullying. As I wrote on CNN.com, as well as said on the nationally-syndicated Dr. Phil Show, I believe parents and schools need to take an active role in ending this epidemic that afflicts kids nationwide, gay or not.”
Martin was suspended by CNN, who released a statement reading, “Roland Martin’s tweets were regrettable and offensive. Language that demeans is inconsistent with the values and culture of our organization, and is not tolerated. We have been giving careful consideration to this matter, and Roland will not be appearing on our air for the time being.” It is not clear how long Martin’s suspension will last.]
Martin maintained this his tweets were directed at soccer fans and not related 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,” he said. “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.”
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