April 06, 2004

Airhead America

Someone should tell these asshats to stop digging:

WLIB plans to go Black at night

“You remember things like WLIB’s logo ‘Keeping the business in the family,’ ” said Irwin Claire, co-director of the Queens-based Caribbean Immigration Services. “You remember that you used to hear comments like, ‘Rip the knob off your radio, because you wake up and go to sleep with WLIB on the dial.’”

“[That] puts it in perspective,” Claire added as he spoke about the sense of regret and offense many feel about the abruptly announced scheduling changes at New York’s radio station WLIB-1190 AM, which as of March 31 will help launch “Air America Radio,” the new, predominately white, liberal talk-radio network.

“It’s not something where I’m going to get bitter or angry. Businesses make decisions; they have a right to do that for their shareholders. But where they have stopped programming Caribbean shows, they continue to play the music—without saying anything on air about the new changes. That’s not just sticking the dagger in, but slowly twisting it, too.”

After years of building political and cultural rapport in the African American community, WLIB created a strong following among Caribbean Americans with shows that featured music and also made “Island Link” connections with radio stations in Jamaica, St. Lucia, Trinidad, Grenada, St. Vincent, Antigua and St. Kitts.


“We’re angry that they think they can just turn WLIB into a white talk station and then are arrogant enough to say that the issues they are talking about affect everybody. This is the Democrats,” Law said. “They believe that you don’t really need a Black voice because their [white liberal] concerns are everybody’s concerns.”

In what may be an effort to win back its community standing, Inner City’s general manager, Kernie L. Anderson, this week announced that although Air America has leased broadcast time during the day, March 31 will also initiate WLIB’s 12 a.m. to 5 a.m. overnight focus on Black issues programming. Saturday nights will feature “Moment Creole” with Stanley Barbot, and “Caribbean Cross Culture” will be on every Sunday night. David Dinkins and Rev. Al Sharpton have been offered Sunday morning shows; on weeknights Dr. Carlos Russell will revise his Afrocentric issues show, “Thinking It Through”; and the journalist-author Herb Boyd will host a two-hour call-in news segment, “Conversation with the People.”

Gees...them free-thinkin' white liberals are going to let the black island folk ride in the back of the radio bus. Franken, the Dems et al, should be ashamed and they should immediately offer daytime slots for this community.

Thanks to Baldilocks for the update.

Posted by feste at April 6, 2004 01:05 PM | TrackBack
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