TIMELINE and DECISION RATIONALE:
- March 6th our social media team and John Shuck made Derric aware of some social media posts regarding a guest John planned on having on his show on March 9th
- Derric made Delphine aware right away. They discussed the information coming in, agreed Derric would do more research considering our mission, vision, programming charter and KBOO values as a lens.
- In the afternoon that day, Ani and Erin were made aware by community members of the debate happening on social media over the guest. They reached out to Delphine right away who let them know Derric was doing research.
- Erin, Ani and Delphine together called Derric. Derric explained that his research showed that Kevin Barrett (KB) is pushing an argument that stereotypes and vilifies people of the jewish faith. For example, in a photoshopped image he tweeted, KB claims with sarcasm “The Jews do NOT control the Media” (https://www.veteranstoday.com/2017/09/28/jews-do-not/) accompanying an image of media company logo superposed with their owners faces. The connection KB seems to want to make is that these owners are also citizens of the state of Israel or of jewish descent which furthers his theory that the State of Israel and Zionism is the root of fascism. (http://americanfreepress.net/antifa-left-wing-fascism/) The issue KBOO staff had with his retoric is that it generalizes and stereotypes the “jewish” experience in very inflamatory ways.
- With this information in mind and previous feedback KBOO management has received through our Beloved Community initiative from community members at KBOO about feeling at time ostracized for their faith/origins by other KBOO community members, management made the decision not allow KB on the air.
- The team agreed Derric would call John to tell him and invite him to have another guest on, perhaps someone like Alexander Reid Ross who pointed to some of the issues with KB’s approach.
- Derric called John. They made a different plan about the show.
- Delphine called John on Wednesday to explain the decision and also had a in person conversation with John a few days later.
- Delphine drafted a public response and shared it with staff and the folks who had inquired about the issue. (See response below)
- Posted response in KBOO’s volunteer group
- Emailed response to all who reached out
- Posted public statement on website:
SOURCES CONSIDERED BY STAFF:
RATIONALE FOR DECISION:
KBOO is not a first amendment radio station. KBOO’s mission does not guarantee access to the air waves to everyone. Instead, we are dedicated to “providing programming to unserved or underserved groups.” That might seem broad, so KBOO also has a set of core values that include the concepts of community, progressive perspective, emotional maturity, diversity, leadership and creativity.
- Community: local, accessible, empowering. welcoming, inclusive, participatory, involved
- Progressive Perspective: questioning, vital, uncensored, controversial, activist resource, educational, journalistic integrity, reflecting justice, peace, sustainability and democracy.
- Emotional Maturity: respectful, honest, fair, positive, peaceful, non-violent, engaging, open
- Diversity: valuing, embracing, bridging, listening, understanding, giving voice
- Leadership: bold, exploring, independent, cutting edge, responsible, excellence
- Creativity: eclectic, traditional to experimental, idiosyncratic, innovative, iconoclastic. evolving, compelling
Though our core value of progressive perspective mentions “uncensored” and “controversial”, this same core value also emphasizes the importance of “reflecting justice”. The possible impact of some of KB’s speech on our listeners was too great.
Furthermore, the decision was made by KBOO’s program staff in accordance with KBOO policy# 6 https://kboo.fm/policies) and after consulting with KBOO’s management. It is extremely rare for KBOO staff to intervene in volunteer programming in this way. The role of KBOO’s program staff is not only to develop overall standards for broadcast and podcast, but it is first and foremost to ensure KBOO’s programming is aligned with our mission and programming charter. As explained above, KBOO’s staff evaluated that Kevin Barrett’s speeches, writing, and other publicly available material are diametrically opposed to KBOO’s values.
On March 26th, 2018 KB published a blog post on American Free Press (http://americanfreepress.net/antifa-left-wing-fascism/) discussing the issues with KBOO not allowing him on the air. He concludes his post by saying:
“As an American loyal to our Constitution, and to our history as a tolerant “melting pot” of different cultures, religions, and worldviews, I am strongly opposed to most aspects of fascism. I loathe intolerance, authoritarianism, censorship, racism, extreme nationalism, militarism, and scapegoating. But I do think some fascists, such as America’s greatest 20th-century poet. Ezra Pound, were right in their critique of usury and their support for overthrowing the dictatorship of the international bankers. And I think much of the so-called alt-right consists of patriotic Americans—not fascists—who are gradually waking up to oppose the global Zionist dictatorship in the making sometimes known as the New World Order.”
This statement further solidified the decision of management.
PUBLIC RESPONSE TO KEVIN BARRETT AND ALL
March 13th, 2018
Dear Community Members,
We truly appreciate the level of community input we have received following our decision to cancel Kevin Barrett’s appearance on The Beloved Community program produced by John Shuck last Friday. We stand with the decision we made.
It is a decision that was made by KBOO’s program staff in accordance with KBOO policy# 6 https://kboo.fm/policies) and after consulting with KBOO’s management. It is extremely rare for KBOO staff to intervene in volunteer programming in this way. The role of KBOO’s program staff is not only to develop overall standards for broadcast and podcast, but it is first and foremost to ensure KBOO’s programming is aligned with our mission and programming charter. KBOO’s staff evaluated that Kevin Barrett’s speeches, writing, and other publicly available material are diametrically opposed to KBOO’s values.
To be clear, KBOO is independent and this decision was made by staff who have ethical integrity and not as a response to any type of pressure. At this point, we would like for the folks who are questioning KBOO’s decision making process, policies and leadership to explore their identities and that of the people who are entrusted by KBOO’s current policies and members to make these decisions.
KBOO values community input and we heard the arguments all of you brought forward. Thank you for your feedback. We stand with the decision we made last Friday.
- We needed to have more public statements to keep people informed of our decision and reinforce our rationale for transparency but also to further the dialogue and encourage more debate off the air
- The staff person in charge of overseeing communications and messaging for KBOO should also be involved from the get go and throughout to ensure proper communication happened.
POSSIBLE NEXT STEPS:
- For folks who disagree with the decision that was made and the process used by staff, they can suggest a policy change to replace or expend on Policy # 6 to be presented to the Program Advisory Committee for input and then taken to the Personnel and Governance committee to be formatted into a KBOO policy. The Personnel committee will then present a motion for the board to pass the new policy.
- Conflict resolution needs to happen with John Shuck and KB. A process is already under way led by the Executive Committee/Station Manager Support Team following KBOO’s conflict resolution Policy # 5
People can share their input about this report by taking this survey until June 30th: https://goo.gl/forms/9SndVQhqapdDEjzD3 or access a paper copy at KBOO 20 SE 8th Ave.