The community response to Sacramento radio station KRXQ FM, following hateful and threatening remarks toward gender variant children on May 28th, has been overwhelming and gratifying. A GLAAD Call to Action and a remarkable report by Michael Rowe of the Huffington Post on May 2 sparked a groundswell of outrage and protest from the transcommunity and our advocates.
According to a GLAAD Blog update, McDonald's is the 10th major company so far to withdraw advertising from KRXQ.
Nine days ago, KRXQ morning hosts Rob Williams and Arnie States ridiculed and defamed a transitioned Nebraska child and her loving family, going so far as to promote shame and even violence against gender variant youth. States remarked:
"If my son, God forbid, if my son put on a pair of high heels, I would probably hit him with one of my shoes. I would throw a shoe at him. Because you know what? Boys don't wear high heels. And in my house, they definitely don't wear high heels."
and continued, "I look forward to when they go out into society and society beats them down."
Williams and States hurled hateful epithets toward transpeople and especially children throughout the thirty-minute segment, including "freaks," "abnormal," "idiot," and "dumbass."
While the bulk of the community response as been directed at the station management and its major advertisers, it is the parent corporation that should ultimately be held accountable. KRXQ FM in Sacramento is owned by Entercom Communications, Corp., based near Philadelphia, PA. According to the Entercom web site:
"Entercom is one of the five largest radio broadcasting companies in the United States, with a nationwide portfolio of 110 stations in 23 markets, including San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, Denver, Portland, Sacramento and Kansas City."
Mr. David J. Field is listed in the 2008 Annual Report as President and CEO of Entercom Communications. The principal address and contact numbers for him are:
Entercom Communications Corp.
401 City Ave., Suite 809
Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004
According to Google Finance, Entercom reported total revenues of $439 million in 2008 with 1600 employees. Its top five institutional investors listed on MSN Money Central are:
- Dimensional Fund Advisors, LP
- Barclays Global Investors, N.A.
- Goldman Sachs Asset Management
- Perkins Investment Management LLC
- AQR Capital Management LLC
To date, neither Entercom nor KRXQ have offered any apology or retraction. Instead, Arnie States fumed on May 3, "I'm not apologizing for what I said," He went so far as to threaten to quit before apologizing to the children and families harmed by his words, "If I was forced to apologize about this, I would have walked out the door."
In his responsibility to oversee the KRXQ station, CEO David Field has perhaps forgotten the principle emphasized on his own corporate web site, "The company has a long-standing commitment to responsible corporate citizenship ..." It is time for Entercom Communications to step up, to live up to this commitment.