Yesterday, we pointed out that on his talk radio program, Jim Quinn repeated the myth that “pedophilia is far more rampant among the gay community than it is among the straight community.” This was only the latest in Quinn's long line of attacks on the LGBT community.
Today, GLAAD has issued a call to action, urging its supporters to reach out to Quinn's syndicator, Clear Channel, and “demand that the company stop supporting these rampant, defamatory attacks on gay people's lives.”
From GLAAD's statement:
After this latest incident GLAAD reached out to Clear Channel executives and urged an on-air apology from Quinn. Clear channel responded in part by saying:
Clear Channel presents opinion programming that covers a wide range of perspectives, and which we believe ultimately achieves balance through the clash and tumult in the public forum of at-times conflicting ideas - and not by our exercise of editorial control over those opinions. Indeed, on the broadcast in question of The War Room with Quinn and Rose, Jim Quinn's on-air partner Rose Tennent challenged his opinions regarding homosexuality. Recognizing that some members of our audience will inevitably disagree with him and at times may find his opinions flatly offensive, we believe that Jim Quinn's commentaries and debates take place within the wide boundaries of that public forum. Differing views were presented in the broadcast itself and no apology for this discussion is warranted.
Clear Channel's response sends a message that it is comfortable providing a platform for Quinn's misinformation and benefitting financially from it. Clear Channel also claims it does not exercise editorial control over its programs, but has in fact taken direct actions against problematic content on a number of occasions. These include cancelling the Atlanta-based radio show “The Regular Guys” for airing a graphic conversation during a break and recording colleagues using the restroom, firing a San Francisco DJ for racially charged language against Asian Americans and denigrating people with disabilities, and terminating Florida radio host “Bubba The Love Sponge” for graphic on-air discussions about sex and drugs.
Yet Clear Channel continues to give Jim Quinn a free pass to launch gratuitously offensive attacks against LGBT people and the company not only stands behind the problematic content, it continues to promote it.
GLAAD urges you to contact Clear Channel Communications and demand that the company stop supporting these rampant, defamatory attacks on gay people's lives.
Clear Channel is failing to live up to its diversity standards that clearly state: “Our ZERO TOLERANCE policy that prohibits discrimination extends beyond our employees, into each and every market in which we conduct business.” It is time for Clear Channel to stop enabling Jim Quinn's troubling pattern of on-air abuse that creates a hostile climate and puts our community in harm's way.