February 4th, 2009
09:00 AM ET

Obama's press office needs diversity

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/01/22/gibbs.presser/art.whitehouse.press.cnn.jpg]

Roland S. Martin
CNN Contributor

A lot of media outlets made a big deal out of the mostly white White House press corps covering the first black president, and those stories were worth pursuing.

Any of us in the business knows full well that those are considered plum jobs and are a steppingstone to greater things.

But while we hold the media accountable for the need to diversify their ranks, it's quite telling to see the lack of diversity in the White House's press office.

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soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Terry

    Another thing....you write three sentences and this makes worthy reading material. Get freakin' real.

    February 5, 2009 at 6:38 am |
  2. Terry

    This is stupid commentary....not enough Asians, Columbians, Spaniards, Indians, American Indians, Hungarians, Chinese,...

    Mr. Martin....people are tired of the race card.....that has been over used and people no longer accept garbage like that.

    In fact...the viewing public is pretty much tired of you, Carville and Belaga. We have bigger problems with this Pork Package than you droning on your personal agenda.

    February 5, 2009 at 6:35 am |
  3. Joe Negro

    I just really can't be mad at the hire-who-you-know philsophy it makes its own kind of sense. It would be nice if their was more color in the press corps but it doesn't keep me up at night. Plus how is it fair not to hire a qualified white guy just because he not "diverse" enough? Sounds like reverse racism to me. I'm black by the way, not as if that matters.

    February 5, 2009 at 3:03 am |
  4. Irv Rowe

    Mr. Martin, I have heard you said it on national television and I have heard a female mention it on the radio. My question is: when is the media and the various commentators going to show our new President the proper respect due to him and his office by consistently referring to him as President Barack Obama, instead of my his name only?

    I know he has a very personable, "guy next door" charm, but that is absolutely beside the point. He is the President of the most powerful nation in the world. Those individuals–who are supposed to be professionals–need to jump and dislodge their heads from their four points of contact (ask an army person to explain) and address the President accordingly.

    I have never seen this before. Even after leaving office, we still refer to George Bush as President Bush. In the beginning, we used to call him Senator Obama, Candidate Obama, and President Elect Obama–then suddenly when he becomes the president, he is simply Barack Obama. Come on.

    If we are disrespecting our President like that on a constant basis in the national media, what will the international community do? We must stop this right now! He is now and forever President Barack Obama–not simply Barack Obama–and his wife is First Lady Michelle Obama. There needs to be some serious conversation on this matter. This practice is diminishing the prestige of the Presidency and our President. News chiefs, nationwide, need to ensure their reporters and commentators start addressing our President with the proper title and respect due to him.

    February 4, 2009 at 9:46 pm |
  5. Mike in NYC

    Just the press corps? BO's entire administration is overwhelmingly white. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

    February 4, 2009 at 11:16 am |