Roland Martin is speaking out against CNN, claiming that the “white male executives” are the only reason his contract won’t be renewed and he never received his own program on the network.
The outspoken ex-CNN pundit sat down with HuffPost Live for more than half an hour and used his time on air to slam CNN for their lack of diversity and even racism.
He explained that despite all his success on the network his career never grew and he was never allowed to advance up the career ladder.
“You have largely white male executives who are not necessarily enamored with the idea of having strong confident minorities who say, ‘I can do this,’” Martin said. “We deliver, but we never get the big piece, the larger salary – to be able to get from here to there.”
He also revealed that ratings have nothing to do with it because he managed to excel in ratings but was never rewarded.
“If it’s a ratings game, and we won, how is it I never got a show,” he questioned.
Of course there are two sides to every story, but we’re not positive that we can defend CNN too much on this one – but we’ll give it our best shot just to be fair.
Choosing anchors for a program isn’t based solely on ratings or even on performance at the end of the day. When networks come up with a concept for a show they have to figure out who seems to fit that slot the best.
The only problem here, is that of all of CNN’s extensive programming you can’t tell me that there was only one African American who was the best fit for the job.
Don Lemon is pretty much the only prominent black host on the network and he was given the less popular weekend gig.
Either way, while CNN didn’t see enough in Martin to keep him around other organizations are actually honoring the 44-year-old journalist.
The National Association of Black Journalists has deemed Roland Martin as their Journalist of the Year for 2013.
As someone who prides myself on trying to tell the whole story, I must point out that Roland was given the title only after he revealed that CNN would not be renewing his contract.
Take that as you will, but it seems like the NABJ may have picked a Journalist of the Year that would also come with some major publicity.
Regardless, Martin is still a talented journalist of color and NABJ President Gregory H. Lee Jr. even took to the time to gush about his talents.
“Roland Martin has had an enviable career as a multimedia journalist, becoming a respected and trusted voice in print, on air and online,” he said. “He is unapologetic about his quest to provide well-rounded coverage of the African American community, and to provide unique insights to diverse audiences across the many platforms on which he is asked to contribute on a regular basis.”
Lee also insisted that the real reason Martin was picked was because of his coverage of voter suppression which become a huge story during the 2012 presidential election.
He certainly deserves the title, regardless of the real reasons why he was picked over so many others, and we just hope that one day he receives the program he’s always wanted and crush’s one of CNN’s programs in the ratings – the irony would be amazing.