CNN has finally taken an action following Roland Martin's Super Bowl tweets which were said to be advocating violence against gay men. Calling the political analyst's statements posted on his Twitter page "regrettable and offensive," the network announced that it will suspend Martin.
"Language that demeans is inconsistent with the values and culture of our organization, and is not tolerated," the network explained in a statement. "We have been giving careful consideration to this matter, and Roland will not be appearing on our air for the time being."
The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), who had demanded Martin's removal from CNN, supported the network's recent decision. "CNN today took a strong stand against anti-LGBT violence and language that demeans any community," so said Rich Ferraro, a spokesperson for the organization.
Ferraro further stated, "Yesterday, Martin also spoke out against anti-LGBT violence. We look forward to hearing from CNN and Roland Martin to discuss how we can work together as allies and achieve our common goal of reducing anti-LGBT violence as well as the language that contributes to it."
Martin was criticized by GLAAD after tweeting about men who may have liked an H&M commercial featuring David Beckham, which was aired during the Sunday, February 5 telecast of Super Bowl XLVI. "If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham's H&M underwear ad, smack the ish out of him!" so the CNN contributor tweeted.
In another tweet, Martin wrote, "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." Defending that he was referring to soccer fans, he wrote in a following tweet, "I know what I said, why I said it, and it's consistent with me cracking on soccer. Deal with it."
He, however, later apologized for his remarks. "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," he stated on his blog.