Hall of shame?
The national 2008 Radio Hall of Fame inductees ( whose display is presently housed in Chicago's Museum of Broadcast Communications [ MBC ] ) will include the hatemongering organization Focus on the Family. Since 1978, Focus on the Family has actively used the television and radio airwaves to promote hatred and discrimination directly towards the LGBT community through its right-wing Christian ministry.
Voting for the Radio Hall of Fame ( RHOF ) inductees this year included any online voter, as opposed to any registered and paid member of the Museum of Broadcast Communications ( MBC ) . This procedural change has turned what was once a shrine to broadcast journalists into a mere online popularity contest.
How sad this is for past, current and future RHOF inductees. How terrible it will be for the children who will walk through the MBC for education and inspiration to see Focus on the Family honored along side the likes of Garrison Keillor, Edward R. Murrow and Jack Benny, to mention a few.
How could the RHOF's Steering Committee even consider nominating Focus on the Family? Why do its nominating and voting processes lack mechanisms to screen out or exclude any individual or organization that actively uses the airwaves to promote hatred and discrimination against another group?
LGBT Liberation will be holding a demonstration on Saturday, Nov. 8, 5:30-7:30 p.m., at the Renaissance Chicago Hotel, 1 W. Wacker, during the Broadcast Hall of Fame ceremonies.
I encourage people to contact Mr. Bruce Dumont, the founder, president and CEO of the Museum of Broadcast Communications. Mr. Dumont is the surviving partner of the late and much beloved Kathy Osterman ( a staunch supporter of LGBT rights ) . What has occurred here does not reflect Mr. Dumont's personal beliefs.
Yet, Mr. Dumont and the Museum of Broadcast Communications should take a stand and use their powerful influence. They need to demand that the RHOF make immediate policy changes to ensure that it never again knowingly honors individuals or organizations such as Focus on the Family, which use the airwaves strictly as a tool for spreading hatred and discrimination that they hardly improved radio programming. If the RHOF chooses to not make these changes, remove them from the museum. Let the RHOF find a city other than Chicago to house its now tainted list of inductees.
Readers can respectfully contact Mr. Dumont at email@example.com or call the museum directly at 312-245-8200 or for more information on the demonstration Nov. 8 contact firstname.lastname@example.org .
To the Editor:
Thank you for your recent interview with State Rep. Rosemary Mulligan, who has done an incredible job as a leader over the past 15 years in promoting GLBT and pro-choice issues. Mulligan's bipartisan efforts on our behalf fit perfectly with Barack Obama's message of Democrats and Republicans working together to solve problems. None of the issues of our time have been settled without broad support of both Republicans and Democrats, including women getting the right to vote, civil rights, the Americans with Disabilities act, etc. Obama and Mulligan are two leaders who have understood this from the start of their political careers out of a deep desire to improve people's lives.
If we look at the Illinois General Assembly, there are many Democratic state representatives and Democratic state senators who share Sarah Palin's views on abortion rights and GLBT issues, including making abortion illegal in cases of rape and incest, support for the failed abstinence only sexuality education, opposition to stem cell research, opposition to the recently enacted GLBT civil-rights law and the current civil-union legislation languishing in Springfield. And, of course, there are many Republicans who also share these views. There are not enough Democratic or Republican votes in the General Assembly to protect our civil rights or keep abortion legal in Illinois. There are only enough votes when you add the Republicans and Democrats together who support us.
It is extremely short-sighted, not to mention a losing political strategy, to not hold both Democrats and Republicans responsible for our issues. We need strong supporters on both sides of the political aisle. By not promoting a strong bipartisan commitment to our issues, we are merely continuing the counterproductive partisan squabbling that may benefit a few leaders of the political parties, but does nothing to solve the pressing issues surrounding HIV, health care, civil rights and reproductive rights. Re-electing State Rep. Rosemary Mulligan will go a long way to this end. You can support her campaign by going towww.repmulligan.org . Strongly partisan Democrats and Republicans who are sincerely committed to moving our issues forward should feel free to contact me as I can provide you both with a long list of right-wing state representatives, state senators and candidates of both political parties that need to be defeated ASAP. And you know who you are.
Always in equality and choice,
President & CEO