When CNN anchor Fredricka Whitfield finally offered an on-air apology Monday for calling the man who shot at Dallas police headquarters “courageous and brave,” some fellow pundits closed ranks in forgiveness, but a Texas politician called the remarks “shameful” and demanded she be fired.
Discussing Whitfield’s remark on Fox News’ “The Five” Monday, Geraldo Rivera called it “a dumb mistake,” but host Eric Bolling listed a number of anti-police statements and gaffes from CNN reporters, saying “there’s a pattern developing on CNN.”
Dana Perino, however, called Whitfield’s statement an “error in judgment,” noting that reporters sometimes misspeak on live television.
Fellow panelist Tom Shillue agreed.
“I don’t think she meant it at all,” he said. “She wasn’t incorrect, right? They were bad, courageous guys.”
Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick was having none of it.
In a letter to CNN chief Jeff Zucker, Patrick called Whitfield’s remarks “shameful” and “not acceptable in Texas or anywhere else in this nation.”
He called for CNN to remove Whitfield as a news host “immediately and permanently,” and for CNN to “offer a written apology to the Dallas Police Department, all law enforcement officers everywhere and to the people of Texas for Ms. Whitfield’s appalling remarks.”
And Patrick wasn’t alone.
While some of the TV pros were ready to forgive Whitfield, Twitter users responded with anger and incredulity.
CNN anchor says she ‘misspoke’ -doesn’t apologize 4 calling gun attack on Dallas police hq ‘courageous & brave if not crazy’ @foxandfriends
— heather nauert (@heatherfoxnews) June 15, 2015
— monique (@chanelgurlO8) June 15, 2015
— Richard J Werhle Jr (@rwerhle) June 15, 2015
Patrick’s letter triggered Tweets of support from citizens who value law enforcement.
— Steve Kair (@SteveKair) June 15, 2015
— Danele Durham (@daneledurham) June 15, 2015