For Immediate Release
Homophobic Hate Speech "More Than Offensive"
LGBT leaders respond to pattern of attacks across local and regional radio
WASHINGTON - In response to Media Matters for America's recent report on
"radioactive smears," which exposed the prevalence of hate speech on
a wide variety of topics on local and regional radio stations nationwide,
Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin (WI-02), co-founder and co-chair of the
Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus, and Neil G. Giuliano, President of the Gay
and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), released the following
"This kind of hateful speech is more
than offensive," said Rep. Baldwin. "I applaud Media Matters for conducting the study
'Radioactive Smears' and exposing the homophobic comments that aim
to divide our nation and deny equal rights for all Americans."
"No fair-minded person can look at
these statements and believe that these prejudices have a place in our media.
The dangerous message that programming departments and producers send by
continuing to embrace this anti-gay rhetoric is that there is no downside and
considerable benefit for those who use vulgar slurs and promote
homophobia," said Giuliano. "We call on other media outlets to
continue to take broadcasters to task when they promote these kinds of vulgar
slurs toward any group of people."
The Media Matters report demonstrates a
pattern of homophobic rhetoric that extends across multiple radio hosts,
stations and syndicators:
- Michael Savage: "If
you're insane, hate the family ... hate your mother and father, hate the
Bible, hate the church, and hate the synagogue," you oppose CA gay
- Jim Quinn: "Gay sex
produces AIDS"; "They should charge homosexuals more for their
... health insurance"
- Brian Sussman invited
guest to talk about his claim that "gay and lesbian radicals actively
recruit through our schools and the media"
Since the release of the "Radioactive Smears"
report, Media Matters has also
documented the following radio attacks against gay, lesbian, or transgender Americans:
- Chris Baker: Media have
"blood on their hands" for murder of transgender woman because they
created "false sense of reality"
O'Reilly suggested that without Prop 8, "a man can have 27 wives"; CA
Supreme Court disagrees
- Jim Quinn trivializes
same-sex marriage effort, claiming: "[G]ays never wanted to get married
until ... about five years ago"