Bridges burned to a crisp Wednesday night as TV One’s Roland Martin went on a rampage against CNN, which happens to be his former employer.
But CNN execs were in good company. Martin also pounced on Fox News hosts Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly.
All in the time frame of one hour.
Martin is no wallflower on an ordinary day. But even by Roland standards, he reached a new fevered pitch of furious tonight as he savaged members of the media for what he believes to be their poor, overhyped, distorted coverage of the Baltimore riots.
“I simply can’t be silent about the nonsense I am seeing,” he wrote on Twitter. “It is beyond shameful.”
Martin was particularly incensed by a CNN promo. “That @CNN promo scared the hell out of me,” he wrote. “Had I not actually visited Baltimore, I would be frightened. This is media gone wild. …Did the promo have peaceful protests? NOPE.”
He called the promo “an abomination.”
Martin discussed his previous employment as a contributor at the network. “I was never quiet when I worked at @cnn when we did dumb stuff,” he wrote. “You can’t just take the check & stay quiet. Truth demands a voice speak up.”
His big problem? He believes the network is inflating the violence and destruction.
“Folks, I’ve been to Baltimore,” he wrote. “Mainstream media is acting like the entire city has gone to hell. The pockets are very small. Seriously. It’s not like blocks and blocks and blocks of Baltimore are ravaged. What is being reported is unbelievably distorted.”
He brought up CNN’s ravenous desire for ratings (but to be fair, that’s clearly what all the cable networks desire).
“I get drama,” he wrote. “I get ratings. But @CNN is acting like Baltimore has been holy hell since Saturday. That is just a flat out lie.”
Roland urged his former colleagues to stand up to CNN President Jeff Zucker about the aforementioned promo. He said “anybody working at CNN with a conscience” should speak up.
“I would hope @VanJones68 @CharlesMBlow @marclamonthill @SunnyHostin @andersoncooper @ChrisCuomo would tell Zucker & Jautz this promo is BAD,” he wrote. “And @wolfblitzer @jaketapper @donlemon @erinburnett should tell Zucker, Jautz & others: This promo is not a fair characterization of Bmore.”
He even addressed those who may think he just has sour grapes.
“This has nothing 2 do w/me no longer at @cnn,” he wrote. “I can assure u that if this promo had run when I was there, top brass would have heard from me.”
In 18 tweets, he went after O’Reilly (here’s a sampling):
1. “Did you see @oreillyfactor? He kept harping on her having 6 kids; multiple dads; said she wasn’t educated. WAS SICK.” 2. “So instead of LISTENING & LEARNING from @AlvedaKing @ConnieRicePCN, @oreillyfactor’s paternalism was on display. He is all knowing. NOT THEM.” 3. “So Bill @OReillyFactor assumes that if you’re in the ghetto & you get an education, you’re guaranteed a job. Is he now a socialist? Then @oreillyfactor tells a flat out lie. ‘Ms Rice, any ghetto in any world, if you get an education, you’ll get a job.’ Oh really, Bill?”
4. “Then this fool @oreillyfactor says shouldn’t the disintegration of the Black family be addressed. Which IT IS. But he refuses to listen.” 5. “Then it gets worse for @oreillyfactor. he claims Black folks don’t love their children.” 6. “OMG. I just saw @mmfa and it is now irrefutable that Bill @oreillyfactor is one of the dumbest people on the face of the earth.”
There may be a contender in Roland’s dumb contest: Hannity also got a spanking. Roland says Hannity can’t handle his funk. Which may be true — Martin learned tonight that the host has blocked him on Twitter.
“Hilarious! Just went to the TL of ol’ boy @SeanHannity and he has me blocked. Guess when I #BringTheFunk, he couldn’t handle it! LMAO. TRUE STORY: @SeanHannity’s show booked me last year. Was ON THE TRAIN to NY, they called, cancelled. Claimed some BS. Has NEVER called again. Clearly a producer of @seanhannity wanted me on. Someone saw it and said, ‘Oh, no! We can’t have him. Way too much truth!’ #BringTheFunk. And @IAmSophiaNelson @noellenikpour & others have gone to @seanhannity & his team and said, ‘Book, Roland. He’s solid.’ Nope. Sean is scared.”
In a more generalized beating of the media, Roland wrote, “The Baltimore PD is leaking that #FreddieGray basically severed his own spine. Media will report it breathlessly.”
In Roland’s world — at least for tonight — the media stinks, especially when it comes to self-reflection.