But he claims he was "joking" when he Tweeted that sports fans should beat the shit "ish" out of gay males ...
Trudy Ring reports for The Advocate: CNN commentator Roland Martin made it a not-so-super Sunday with a tweet and a Facebook posting widely perceived to be homophobic, and the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation has called on the network to fire him. GLAAD reports that after retailer H&M’s Super Bowl commercial featuring soccer player David Beckham, Martin tweeted to his nearly 95,000 Twitter followers, "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."
Equality activists at the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation quickly responded to Martin's call for violence toward "dudes" who appreciate Beckham's pecs and abs by tweeting: "Advocates of gay bashing have no place at @CNN." The organization is now asking for Martin's resignation. (Sign the petition at Change.org.)
Heterosexists watching the game might snort and ask what's the big deal. It's not complicated: Roland Martin has every right to act icky and holier-than-thou around queer folk - but crude statements that appear to promote violence can incite hate crimes and lead to anti-gay bullying in schools.
In any event, this isn't Martin's first stroll down Homophobia Lane. From GLAAD:
Last year, Tracy Morgan said during a stand-up routine that if his son were gay he would 'stab him.' Morgan later apologized and worked with GLAAD to send positive messages to parents and LGBT youth. Morgan understood how his words could influence his fans and put youth in danger, while Martin defended Tracy Morgan's original remarks... At a time when the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs found that violence against LGBT people was up 23%, we need people in the public eye to speak out against the dangers of anti-LGBT violence, not openly encourage it. Martin also has used his platform to misrepresent religious views about LGBT people. Far from the church being uniformly anti-gay, as Martin has claimed, LGBT people are welcomed just as they are into the full life of the church, in congregations and entire denominations across the United States. Lutheran, Presbyterian, and Episcopal denominations welcome LGBT folks, as well as many congregations from a variety of denominations.
Perhaps Martin would feel more appreciated spreading his anti-LGBT views for Rupert Murdoch's GOP-pandering media consortium. (That would be Fox News, home of far right pundits, climate change deniers, religious fanatics, conspiracy theorists, anti-choice zealots, Obama haters, and of course run-of-the-mill homobigots.)