I was talking with my Dean earlier today, and she told me about a network of Christian radio stations moving in to take out National Public Radio stations by taking over their frequencies. At first I thought it couldn’t be true, much less legal, but then I found a recent New York Times article reporting on two NPR affiliate stations in Louisiana that were kicked off of the airwaves by American Family Radio resulting in a community of 95,000 people not having access to public radio (which includes local programming, unlike what AFR provides). As an on-air person at a local student-run radio station with a short broadcast range, this is disturbing to me.
“The Christian stations routed NPR in Lake Charles under a federal law that allows noncommercial broadcasters with licenses for full-power stations to push out those with weaker signals — the equivalent of the varsity team kicking the freshmen out of the gym.”
Jeffrey A. Dvorkin, Ombudsman for NPR has written a response to accusations of NPR having an agenda, liberal or otherwise, that is articulate and thoughtful.
If public radio was supposed to be an alternative, why do so many people feel excluded from those values?
Well, Congress voted yesterday. I knew they would give Dubya the power to join the “world’s worst leaders with the world’s worst weapons” but I kept hoping that more of them would hear the opposition (which is much larger and stronger than the media chooses to portray). Guess I should have known better, what with the elections being so soon.