He maintained this his tweets were directed at soccer fans and not related 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 said. “I’m disheartened that my words would embolden prejudice. While public debate over social issues is healthy, no matter which side someone takes, there is no room for debate as to whether we need to be respectful of others.”
GLAAD issued a lengthy response this afternoon: “At a time when anti-gay violence is something suffered by LGBT people and those perceived as LGBT people in this country every day, prominent figures like Martin should condemn, not promote, such violence. Yesterday afternoon a video of a young man being brutally assaulted after exiting a grocery store was posted on LGBT news sites. As they beat and kicked the man, his attackers screamed “Fa**ot” and other anti-gay slurs. Watch the video. This is what ‘smacking the ish’ out of someone for being gay can look like. Speaking out against anti-LGBT violence on his site is a start, but Martin should use his other platforms to fight against the very things he says he himself experienced. Media and those in it are very powerful forces in this country. GLAAD takes that very seriously and we hope that Roland Martin will in the future do so as well, whether it’s on CNN or in another outlet,” it begins. It ends with GLAAD calling on him to meet with its advocates and our partners to discuss how they can work together to address anti-LGBT violence.