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CNN suspends Martin for 'offensive' comments

CNN suspends Martin for 'offensive' comments

February 9th, 2012 in News

NEW YORK (AP) - CNN suspended political analyst Roland Martin on Wednesday for "offensive" tweets during the Super Bowl that some critics said were anti-gay.

Martin commented on Twitter about a commercial during the Super Bowl that showed soccer star David Beckham in underwear: "If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham's H&M underwear ad, smack the ish out of him."

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation said the remark advocated violence against gays. Martin said that he was making a joke about soccer and that he doesn't support violence against anyone.

Martin also tweeted: "Who the hell was that New England Patriot they just showed in a head to toe pink suit? Oh, he needs a visit from (hash)teamwhipdatass."

Martin later issued an apology on his website saying he was "truly sorry" to those who felt his tweet was anti-gay, homophobic or advocating violence. "I'm disheartened that my words would embolden prejudice," he said.

CNN said Wednesday that Martin's remarks were "regrettable and offensive" and he will not be on air "for the time being."

"Language that demeans is inconsistent with the values and culture of our organization, and is not tolerated," CNN said.

GLAAD spokesman Rich Ferraro said CNN "took a strong stand" against demeaning language and anti-gay violence. He said GLAAD looked forward to discussing the network's decision with CNN and Martin.