CNN Suspends Roland Martin For Super Bowl Tweets

    February 8, 2012
    Mike Tuttle

CNN has suspended commentator Roland Martin after some remarks he Tweeted during the Super Bowl were interpreted as homophobic. CNN issued a statement that read:

“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.”

Martin has defended what he said in his Tweets as not being homophobic at all. His comments came immediately after the H&M underwear commercial featuring David Beckham.

Since Martin has not deleted any of the Tweets in question, we can walk through the whole thing in chronological order and see how it played out. First, here is the Beckham ad that ran during the Super Bowl.

Immediately after that, Martin Tweeted:

Followed immediately by:

Here is where things started to go bad for Martin. He was challenged by multiple people on Twitter as to what he meant by the Tweets. Were they homophobic?

Martin responded…

From here out, Martin tried to explain that his issue was not with a mostly-naked man, or gay men. It was with Beckham being shown in a commercial during the Super Bowl. He went on to remind people that he makes wisecracks about soccer a lot. His assertion was that the Super Bowl (American “football”) was no place to run an ad about soccer (European “football”). His crack was about Beckham the soccer player, not Beckham as a half-naked man.

Martin even made another comment about Piers Morgan that would seem to back his “it was about soccer” defense.

And, Piers Morgan responded to him in kind, being jovial and saying nothing about gays.

Someone else responded to that exchange…

And, once again, Martin pointed to soccer as the crux of his joke…

Flash forward to today. CNN suspends Martin as commentator based on his Tweets. Seems to me like a spineless thing to do. Stand up for the people who work for you if you can tell they are not in the wrong.

This man’s misunderstanding has put Roland Martin’s career in question. This is how an ignorant accusation can get out of hand fast, especially when an organization like CNN refuses to do the right thing. This has nothing whatsoever to do with political ideology. It’s just a matter of decency. Roland Martin explained himself. And, there is at least a whole mountain of reasonable doubt as to whether his statement was interpreted correctly. CNN chose to bow to the invective of ignorant people.