CNN’s Roland Martin is under fire following some controversial tweets he sent during the Super Bowl on Sunday evening. The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) has called Martin out and is actively advocating for the network to fire him.
The incident commenced when Martin sent out a tweet, reading, “If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham’s H&M underwear ad smack the ish out of him!” After seeing this message, GLAAD, among other gay advocates, was less-than-pleased.
Read some of Martin’s tweets, below:
GLAAD wasted no time in responding to these messages. Here are just a few of the Twitter responses, both directly following the publication of Martin’s tweets and hours later:
After realizing the fury that followed what he thought were harmless social media quips, Martin released a statement to media and the public. He defended his tweets and claimed that they had nothing at all to do with homosexuality:
I made several cracks about soccer as I do all the time. I was not referring to sexuality directly or indirectly regarding the David Beckham ad, and I’m sorry folks took it otherwise.
It was meant to be a deliberately over the top and sarcastic crack about soccer; I do not advocate violence of any kind against anyone gay, or not. As anyone who follows me on Twitter knows, anytime soccer comes up during football season it’s another chance for me to take a playful shot at soccer, nothing more.
GLAAD, though, isn’t buying the excuse. The organization is calling for CNN to fire Martin, proclaiming — very directly — that “CNN should fire Roland Martin.” A portion of their blog post on the matter highlights a number of other insensitive statements the group claims he’s made. It reads:
Roland Martin has never compared being a soccer fan to being an alcoholic, the way he has compared being gay to being an alcoholic. Roland Martin has never bragged that his wife has led men and women away from the “soccer lifestyle,” the way he claims she has with gay people. Roland Martin has never defended jokes about parents stabbing soccer-playing children, the way he defended jokes about parents stabbing gay children.
Based on this history, this doesn’t seem like a playful jab at what Martin considers an inferior sport.
It seems like a jab at what Martin considers an inferior community of people.
So far, the situation shows no signs of simmering, as one side is ferociously defending himself and the other continues its incessant attacks.