Media personality Geraldo Rivera emailed Politico.com to apologize for incendiary comments he made regarding the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. Rivera said soon after Martin’s death that his attire, a hooded sweatshirt, was as responsible for his death as the man who shot him.
The apology published Tuesday reads, in part, “I apologize to anyone offended by what one prominent black conservative called my ‘very practical and potentially life-saving campaign urging black and Hispanic parents not to let their children go around wearing hoodies.’”
Rivera said that “by putting responsibility on what kids wear instead of how people react to them I have obscured the main point that someone shot and killed an unarmed teenager,” and that he was offering a “heartfelt apology” to anyone he may have offended in his “crusade to warn minority families of the danger to their young sons inherent in gangsta style clothing; like hoodies.”
Rivera’s apology comes days after the Fox News host said on the air last week that Martin – a black teenage boy that was shot and killed by neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman – died because he had been wearing a hoodie.
“I am urging the parents of black and Latino youngsters particularly to not let their children go out wearing hoodies,” Rivera said on “Fox & Friends” last Friday. “I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin’s death as George Zimmerman was.”
Rivera’s comments drew fire from critics that accused the TV and radio personality for suggesting that dark-skinned individuals that sport hoodies are perceived by others as a “gangsta” and a “menace” to society, and that this was the reason Martin was targeted by Zimmerman. After his comments went viral, Rivera admitted that his own son Gabriel was “ashamed” of him.
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