CNN Suspends Roland Martin For David Beckham Tweets
Well, it isn't the first time that sexy soccer star David Beckham has found himself in the middle of controversy, but this time he's on the safer end of it.
It all started when Beckham appeared in an H&M underwear ad that aired during the Super Bowl. CNN analyist Roland Martin wasn't shy about expressing his displeasure on Twitter. "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," read one of Martin's tweets. Another tweet noted that one of the New England Patriots who was dressed all in pink needed "a visit from #teamwhipdatass."
Martin's comments got him in a lot of hot water with the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and the National Black Justice Coalititon, which campaigns for LGBT civil rights. The organizations claimed that Martin's comments promoted hate crimes and violence against gay people. The pundit, however, called GLAAD "way off base," in what they "assume[d]," and claimed that his intention had been to "rip on soccer," which he does "all of the time."
After remaining on the fence for several days, CNN finally suspended Martin Wednesday afternoon. "Roland Martin's tweets were regrettable and offensive," CNN said in a statement about the decision. "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."
The duration of Martin's dismissal was not revealed, but he did post an apology on his website for his remarks. "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."
During his suspension, Martin plans to meet with members of GLAAD for what he hopes to be "a productive dialogue."
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