Syndicated radio host Tom Joyner Friday called on Roland Martin to "make it right" and offer "a sincere apology" to the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. Joyner urged his morning-show colleague not to be like "another family member who refused to turn around," an obvious reference to Tavis Smiley, who left Joyner's show amid criticism from listeners that he had become personally invested in criticizing then-Sen. Barack Obama.
Joyner addressed his open letter to Martin, a commentator on his program, as his Friday blog entry on Joyner's BlackAmericaWeb.com.
Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for TV One, the African American-oriented cable network where Martin hosts "Washington Watch With Roland Martin," a Sunday morning news analysis show, told Journal-isms that the network agreed that Martin's tweets during Sunday's Super Bowl, for which Martin has been suspended from his job as CNN commentator, were offensive.
But TV One differed from Joyner in maintaining that Martin's apology to GLAAD — Martin issued his "final thoughts" on the matter on Monday night — was sufficient.
The TV One statement said, "Roland has made valuable contributions to TV One. However, regardless of his intent, Roland's comments during the Super Bowl were offensive. That said, he has apologized, and we are pleased that he and GLAAD are planning to meet in the near future and hope they can engage in a constructive dialogue."
The Joyner and TV One statements come after columnists, bloggers and users of social media weighed in on the Martin suspension. A pro-Martin, anti-GLAAD essay from Raynard Jackson, president of a Washington public relations/government affairs firm, received added exposure when the Washington Post's theRootDC Web page picked it up on Thursday.
Jackson condemned ". . . the loud silence from within the Black community. I know first-hand that many of the so-called Black 'leadership' were quick to call Roland to get on his TV show or to get him to write a supportive newspaper column about one of their causes. But, now that he is in trouble not one voice is overheard supporting him. Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Ben Jealous, Marc Morial, the Congressional Black Caucus — your silence is so loud!"
Martin, who has worked in print, radio and television, joined the Joyner show in September 2008 as a "senior news analyst."
Joyner wrote Friday, "As head of the family, I've sat back as long as I could, hoping I wouldn't have to say anything. But now the time has come.
"So, Roland, we love you and need you full force to be able to do what you do — represent us and our views on CNN and other arenas. In order to continue your role on that show, on the speaking circuit, etc., it's time for you to make a sincere apology to GLAAD (The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). When people are offended by something we say or do, it doesn’t matter what our intentions are. The job of the offender is simply to apologize and learn a lesson about what to say or do going forward.
"Your mission is greater than your [principle]. It's no longer about you. Now it's grown into something bigger than you are, but only you can make right."
Martin did not respond to an emailed request seeking comment.
Among the questions raised by other commentators were whether journalists should label Martin's tweets homophobic or whether that should be left to critics, since Martin denied they were directed at gays. In the Washington Post, Erik Wemple argued that journalists should use the label.
Other subjects were the inconsistency of CNN actions in punishing what it deemed inappropriate speech, and the inconsistency of news organizations in general in their various newsroom guidelines.
Danielle Belton, the Black Snob: Roland Martin Suspension Really About When (And When Not) To Tweet
Charles M. Blow, New York Times: Real Men and Pink Suit
Keith Boykin, Huffington Post: Monday Morning Quarterbacking With Roland Martin
Arturo R. García, Racialicious: The Boxers Uprising: How Roland S. Martin And CNN Both Got It Wrong
Whoopi Goldberg, Barbara Walters and other co-hosts on "The View," ABC-TV: Roland Martin's Super Bowl tweets
Huffington Post: Bill O'Reilly: Roland Martin Is A Moron (video)
Jimi Izrael, Ruben Navarrette Jr., Jeff Yang, R. Clarke Cooper with Michel Martin, "Tell Me More," NPR: Shop Talk: CNN Tangles With Controversy
Annette John-Hall, Philadelphia Inquirer: CNN pundit's tweets should spark discussion
Allen Johnson, News & Record, Greensboro, N.C.: The twit in Twitter
Wil LaVeist, urbanfaith.com: Roland Martin Fumbles the Ball
Sophia A. Nelson, HuffPost BlackVoices: CNN Slaps the "Ish" Out of Roland S. Martin
Dr. Pamela D. Reed, Diverse: Issues in Higher Education: On Roland Martin — Twitter is Not Your Friend
Barbara Reynolds, Washington Post: Roland Martin, GLAAD and the role of Christianity
Mallary Jean Tenore, Poynter Institute: Nasr: Newsroom guidelines protect employers, not employees
John S. Wilson, mediaite.com: Roland Martin’s CNN Suspension: Has GLAAD Become A Bullying Organization?
Jeff Winbush blog: The Soul Sacrifice of Roland Martin
The headline: "Why does MarketWatch employ a columnist who is a white nationalist?"
"Peter Brimelow writes about personal finance for the online news service — all the basic stuff about dividends, capital gains taxes, and gold," Mark Lacter wrote Thursday for LAObserved. "But Brimelow has another side — he's editor of VDare, which publishes the works of anti-Semitic and racist writers.
"Brimelow is a thug — he blames non-white immigrants for social and economic problems and urges the Republican Party to focus on winning the white vote. Ugh. But he does get around: He was invited to speak at this week's CPAC confab in Washington D.C., which apparently has a few folks riled up," he said, referring to the Conservative Political Action Conference.
"So why is this guy working at MarketWatch? Surely, the honchos know his background (he's not keeping it a secret). Business Insider has asked Dow Jones (owner of MarketWatch) for comment, but so far nothing. I'm reaching out as well. Will keep you posted."
A Dow Jones spokeswoman gave Journal-isms this statement on Friday:
"Peter has been a contributor to MarketWatch for 10 years and writes exclusively on investment topics."
Rosie Gray, buzzfeed.com: CPAC Won't Renounce White Nationalist
Alex Pareene, Salon.com: CPAC welcomes white nationalists
Patch spokeswoman Janine Iamunno told media blogger Jim Romenesko Tuesday that "There are no layoffs planned" and that Romenesko was misinformed when he wrote that day, "A Patch insider tells Romenesko readers that the AOL-owned hyperlocal news sites plan to cut staff and freelance budgets and start producing 'easy, quick-hitting, cookie-cutter copy.' Examples: Best Ofs, and features like 'What’s happening to this vacant storefront.' "
But Janita Poe, a veteran journalist who edited Cascade Patch for Southwest Atlanta, serving many affluent African Americans, said Romenesko had it exactly right. She said she was terminated this week and that "you can't get more un-cookie cutter than Cascade Patch."
"They were losing their creative control. I was too strong and too independent," Poe told Journal-isms on Friday. "The community is in outrage. They had a community website that accurately reported on news in their community."
Poe said she exceeded traffic targets and her bloggers "wrote deeply" about such topics as the movie "Red Tail," being gay and African American, and the Atlanta public school system.
Anna Varela, Patch regional editor for Metro Atlanta, said she would have no comment. Poe said that she was not laid off but that her supervisors dismissed her on inflated charges.
Fans of the site posted in Patch's comments section and on Poe's Facebook page.
"Tell me that this is not true. Has Patch.com made a grave error? Cookie cutter news had been eliminated through her leadership," read a Patch posting attributed to Betty Byrd.
"Janita was an amazing editor. She will be missed. She helped make Cascade Patch really by the community and for the community," read another signed by Dr. Nana Kwaku Opare and Ama Opare.
Poe says local entrepreneurs have approached her about editing an alternative to Cascade Patch
"In a miniskirt and teetering heels, Lilia Luciano was once a staple of the Spanish-language news and entertainment shows like 'Aquí y Ahora' and 'Escándalo TV,'" Cristina Costantini wrote Thursday for HuffPost LatinoVoices. "But, last year, when Luciano left behind entertainment reporting in Spanish in favor of English language news on NBC, she also left behind a look which some say marks Spanish-language programming.
"Luciano now appears on camera almost make-up free, with her waist-length wavy hair cropped short and straight. Her neckline, once plunging, now sits above her collar bone. And those saucer-sized earrings — nowhere in sight.
"Some Spanish-language newscasters dress more provocatively than their English-language counterparts, according to many in the business. Critics of these sexy reporteras say their clothing choices and heavy makeup stem from sexism in Latino culture, often referred to as machismo, and that a provocative appearance threatens their credibility as journalists. Others, however, say that the marriage of female sexuality and journalism is part of Latina culture, and that the combination can be empowering."
A coalition of Latino groups has recorded the ethnic makeup of the guests and commentators on the Sunday television talk shows and concluded, "Today’s political pundits are nearly identical to the ones that sat on the same chairs 40 years ago. The hosts, guests, journalists and commentators are primarily male and white. Women and people of color are underrepresented and there is a glaring absence of Hispanic contributors."
They said Wednesday in a news release, "Last March 2011, the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts (NHFA) launched the Art of Politics Impact Project to address the lack of Latino commentators and guests on the four network Sunday news shows: ABC's This Week, CBS's Face the Nation, FOX News Sunday, and NBC's Meet The Press. The Art of Politics Impact Project is being implemented in collaboration with the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF), Being Latino (BL), The Libre Initiative (TLI) and 16 other national Latino organizations.
"After reviewing 149 broadcasts over 9 months, NHFA found that only 10 Latino men were invited as guests and commentators. Most of them appeared more than once and some were invited both as guest and commentator. The individual breakdown by show is as follows: ABC's This Week included 5 Latinos; CBS's Face the Nation (1) had 2; FOX News Sunday had 4; and NBC's Meet The Press had 7.
"Latinos accounted for 5 percent of the combined number of appearances in these four shows. However, if Juan Williams, a regular FOX commentator, is subtracted from this equation, Latino appearances on Sunday morning shows drop to 2 percent."
[Williams has called himself African American, but Ruben Navarrette Jr. wrote in 2010 for the Washington Post Writers Group, "Williams was born in Panama. His mother was from that country, his father from the West Indies. 'My family all spoke Spanish,' he said. 'For folks who don't understand race, they don't understand that black people can also be Hispanic.'"]
The National Association of Hispanic Journalists did not participate in the project, Gretchen Sierra-Zorita, project director, told Journal-isms on Friday. "We reached out to the NAHJ but they were unable to join us when we initiated the project. The door, of course, is always open to them." NAHJ has been wrestling with financial problems. It projected it would return to the black by the end of 2011, but has not reported whether it met that goal.
The report [PDF] said, ". . . the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts and its partner organizations have corresponded with ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC News and met with the executive producers and staff of This Week, Face the Nation, Fox News Sunday and Meet the Press.
"The leadership of the four news departments is receptive to the issues raised by the Art of Politics Impact Project. Department heads are aware that their news shows need to adapt to the country’s changing demographics and they are clearly interested in attracting more Hispanics to their news audience.
"The four networks have stated that they would like to maintain an ongoing dialogue with the Arts of Politics consortium. As the lead up to the 2012 election intensifies, the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts and its affiliates will continue to work with ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC news to improve its coverage of Latinos and the issue that matter to this critical voting bloc."
Ebony and Jet magazines and the Spanish-language women's magazine Vanidades recorded large circulation gains in 2011, according to figures released this week by the Audit Bureau of Circulations.
Ebony increased its circulation from 997,173 on Dec. 31, 2010, to 1,263,996 on Dec. 31, 2011, a 26.8 percent increase, and its sister publication, the pocket-sized Jet, from 703,944 in 2010 to 818,676 in 2011, a 16.3 percent increase. Both Johnson Publishing Co. publications target African American readers.
In commenting last month on a similar increase in advertising dollars and revenue, Stephen Barr, Johnson Publishing's senior vice president and group publisher, said, "The revamped editorial product has begun to resonate amongst advertisers, clients and C-level decision makers in the marketplace," and "We are working with former Time Inc circulation experts who worked with JPC to deliver a sustainable performance circulation module."
The website magazine-agent.com describes Vanidades ("Vanities") as "The #1 women's beauty, fashion and lifestyle magazine in the US Hispanic Market. The most-read women's magazine in the US Hispanic Market, Vanidades addresses the myriad interests of today's woman.
"Beauty and fashion are at the forefront, featuring the most recent developments in cosmetology and the latest offerings from the most renowned fashion designers. . . . Vanidades has correspondents all around the globe, including the fashion centers of Paris, Milan and New York. . . . " It is published by Editorial Televisa, which is based in Mexico.
Its circulation rose from 192,181 on Dec. 31, 2010, to 309,788 on Dec. 31, 2011, a 61.2 percent increase, the report said.
Figures for other magazines targeting African Americans or Hispanics:
Essence, 1,051,510, no increase; Latina, 506,326, down 0.4 percent; People en Español, 557,636, down 0.1 percent; Poder Hispanic, 406,409, up 1.8 percent; Siempre Mujer, 510,765, up 9.7 percent; Sister2Sister, 153,397, down 7.1 percent; TV y Novelas Estadus Unidos, 285,537, up 39.3 percent; Uptown, 229,216, up 8.2 percent; Vibe, 301,408 (no 2010 figure); XXL, 136,532, down 18.8 percent.
Stefanie Botelho and Ioanna Opidee, Folio: Consumer Magazines See Disappointing Second-Half 2011
Lucia Moses, adweek.com: Oprah Magazine Takes a Big Hit
Eduardo Stanley, Huffington Post: The Rise And Fall Of Spanish-Language Weekly Newspapers In California
Tanzina Vega, New York Times: Magazine Newsstand Sales Suffered Sharp Falloff in Second Half of 2011
"During his remarks at today's White House Science Fair, President Obama ended with a plea to the press: cover this event," Byron Tau wrote Tuesday for Politico.
" 'I'm going to make a special plea to the press,' Obama said, in concluding his remarks. 'Give this some attention.'
"It doesn't belong just on the back pages of a newspaper,' Obama said. "We've got to lift this up. We've got to emphasize how important this is."
"This is the kind of stuff, what these young people are doing that's going to make a bigger difference in the life of our country over the long term that just about anything," the president said.
". . .the president officially unveiled a $22 million effort led by the Carnegie Corporation to recruit more science and technology teachers into the nation's classrooms, along with an additional $80 million in his 2013 budget aimed at the same goal."
Tonyaa Weathersbee, Black America Web: We Need New Attitudes About Math, Science
On Monday, PBS debuts "Slavery by Another Name," narrated by Laurence Fishburne, directed by the noted producer Sam Pollard and based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Douglas A. Blackmon, formerly of the Wall Street Journal. It tells how "even as chattel slavery came to an end in the South in 1865, thousands of African Americans were pulled back into forced labor with shocking force and brutality."
At the Gannett Co., Bob Dickey, president, U.S. Community Publishing, wrote employees on Thursday, "Today we are offering a voluntary Early Retirement Opportunity Program to 665 eligible U.S. Community Publishing employees who are age 56 with at least 20 years of service, as of March 31, 2012, and who are in certain departments and/or job categories."
"Reporters Without Borders has registered a series of freedom of information violations in Bahrain in the run-up to the first anniversary of the uprising in this Gulf kingdom on 14 February, the press-freedom organization said on Friday. They include a refusal to issue visas to a number of foreign journalists for the anniversary, when demonstrations are expected." Among those denied visas were Nicholas Kristof, New York Times columnist; Adam B. Ellick, New York Times photographer; Kristen Chick of the Christian Science Monitor; Cara Swift of the BBC; Alex Delmar-Morgan of the Wall Street Journal and Gregg Carlstrom of Al Jazeera.
"In a recent column, I announced a giveaway of 50 copies of 'The New Jim Crow' by Michelle Alexander," syndicated Miami Herald columnist Leonard Pitts Jr. told readers on Tuesday. "Twelve thousand entries later, the winners have been chosen. Here’s the list."
Hartford (Conn.) Courant cartoonist Bob Englehart apologized for a blog posting in which he wrote Wednesday, "Inner-city poor and minority-filled schools aren't going to change until we can somehow change the pervasive core of the problem: dysfunctional inner-city poor minority families. Sure, we hear of an occasional winner come out of the ghetto. Movie stars, athletes, business people, we know their stories, but they are the very rare exception. For the most part, losers raise losers. Somehow we've got to get to these families and teach them how to respect education. Till then, nothing will change."
This column has written about the Cherokee Freedmen, African Americans also of Cherokee background whose ranks include freelance Boston journalist Kenneth Cooper and Sam Ford of Washington's WJLA-TV. Now, Jarrel Wade reported Thursday in the Tulsa (Okla.) World, "The descendants of former slaves of Muscogee (Creek) Nation members have petitioned the U.S. government to be recognized as their own tribe — a move that could set a legal precedent for thousands of Indian freedmen descendants around the country.
Steven Gray, the last African American Time magazine correspondent when he left last month, has affiliated with theRoot.com. "We're thrilled that he has come aboard as contributing editor, adding to our team coverage of politics and society with his insights and analysis," Managing Editor Sheryl Salomon told Journal-isms Friday.
". . . the International Center for Journalists is one of four American non-governmental organizations that are the subject of an investigation by Egyptian authorities," the Center said on Friday. Five people working for us have been named in the case. The three Americans named have never worked full-time in Egypt for ICFJ (although in some Egyptian reports they have been described as “escaping” the country). Vice President of ICFJ Programs Patrick Butler, former Program Director Natasha Tynes and contractor Michelle Betz have supervised our Egypt programs as part of a larger portfolio of work done from Washington, D.C. Two Egyptian staffers on the ground have also been charged, and their welfare is of the greatest concern."
In December, to honor the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War, The Atlantic magazine released a special commemorative issue. That issue is now available online, the Atlantic's Ta-Nehisi Coates reported Tuesday.
From China, "CCTV America — new perspectives on the news," was scheduled to launch this week in the United States. "CCTV America represents the latest initiative in China Central Television's (CCTV) effort to grow its English language news channel for a global audience seeking diversified perspectives on significant global issues," a news release said.
In Brazil, "Outspoken and controversial political journalist Mário Randolfo Marques Lopes was kidnapped with his girlfriend, Maria Aparecida Guimarães, and ruthlessly executed yesterday at point blank range in Barra do Piraí, Rio de Janeiro," Nisha Thanki reported Friday for the International Press Institute.
BET News is airing a conversation between Dr. Maya Angelou and the hip-hop artist Common on Sunday, recorded as Angelou prepared to accept the Presidential Medal of Freedom last year. Produced by David Scott, vice president, BET News, the show airs at 11 a.m. Eastern time, repeated at 11 p.m. Viewers see Angelou unsuccessfully try to persuade Common to stop using the n-word.
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Journal-isms is published on the site of the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education (www.mije.org). Reprinted on The Root by permission.