Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick (R-TX) sent an official letter to CNN Worldwide President Jeff Zucker over the comments made by weekend anchor Fredricka Whitfield about the Dallas shooting over the weekend. During CNN Newsroom, she referred to the gunman’s actions as “courageous and brave.”
She then apologized on the next day’s program and on Monday’s CNN Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin. While many have forgiven Whitfield and given her the benefit of the doubt, the controversy has continued because of her apology, which has been criticized by some, and how it adds to a perception that CNN is anti-cop.
However, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick has not moved on from the controversy. He sent a letter to President Zucker. In it, he calls on Zucker to fire Whitfield and issue a written to the Dallas police department. Tweets from Dallas policemen indicate a phone call was made to apologize.
Interestingly, Patrick sent the letter to CNN Worldwide headquarters in Atlanta. While this is CNN’s global headquarters, Zucker’s office is in New York City.
June 15, 2015
Mr. Jeffrey Zucker
President of CNN Worldwide
One CNN Center
Atlanta, GA 30303
RE: CNN Host Fredricka Whitfield’s comments
On June 13, CNN News host Fredricka Whitfield said the gunman that opened fire at the Dallas Police Headquarters and planted pipe bombs, was “courageous” and “brave” for his actions. I was shocked and appalled to hear her words. There is no excuse for anyone in any position, especially someone in the position as a news host on a national broadcast, to give praise to a person who deliberately planned to kill law enforcement officers.
In Texas, we have the highest respect for our police officers who risk their lives every day for our safety. Our police are the ones who are brave and courageous, not the man who tried to kill them. Law enforcement officials in Texas and across the nation are outraged by the fact that a CNN news host would insult the men and women who demonstrate real courage and real bravery by praising those who attempt to kill them.
Ms. Whitfield has since said she misspoke. Any fair analysis of her words make clear she did not misspeak. Her words were clearly what she meant to say. She still has not apologized.
Her shameful remarks are not acceptable in Texas or anywhere else in this nation. As Lt. Governor of the state of Texas I am calling for CNN to remove Fredricka Whitfield as news host immediately and permanently. In addition, I’m asking for you, on behalf of 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. What she said is not only inexcusable, but it demonstrates a complete lack of respect to our men and women in uniform. I await your apology on behalf of CNN and your action regarding Ms. Whitfield.
Lt. Governor of Texas