‘John and Ken’ Radio Show Boycott - KFI & National Hispanic Media Coalition Statements
The National Hispanic Media Coalition has launched a boycott of the ‘John and Ken’ radio show on Los Angeles station KFI-AM. Below are the unedited statements from both organizations concerning the boycott.
Expressing your opinion is not a firing offense. KFI stands behind John and Ken and their right to speak their minds- opinions shared, incidentally, by over a million California listeners each week and protected by the First Amendment.
A handful of individuals who claim to speak for the Southern California Latino community have exaggerated or misrepresented what was said on the air in a transparent effort to advance their own political agenda and their own personal ambitions. However, the station wants to be sure that there are no misunderstandings between us and LA’s important, vibrant and diverse Latino community. We are meeting with a larger, more representative group of local Latino leaders – including representatives of LULAC, the nation’s oldest and largest Hispanic Civil Rights organization, the Latin Business Association, the nation’s largest Hispanic business group, and others – to have an open, fruitful discussion about any concerns they may have.
Because KFI refuses to fire John and Ken, as demanded by these few individuals, they have called for a boycott of their show and the station. We’re not going to validate the political agenda of a few and we reject their efforts to intimidate us, or to interfere with our relationship with our listeners.
National Hispanic Media Coalition
For years, John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou, hosts of “The John and Ken Show” on the radio station, KFI, have terrorized Los Angeles’ Latino, Asian American and African American communities, creating an atmosphere of hate and intolerance and legitimizing violence and discrimination against members of these groups. On September 1st, 2011, John and Ken began one of their usual rants about undocumented immigrants and the California DREAM Act. While John and Ken have a history of demonizing Latinos as they pretend to stick to the issues, their September 1st rant went too far. They took it upon themselves to target one immigrant rights activist in particular, Jorge-Mario Cabrera of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA). Instead of taking issue with Jorge-Mario’s politics, the duo provided Mr. Cabrera’s office and personal cell phone numbers and encouraged their listeners to call and harass him. Mr. Cabrera proceeded to receive over 430 abusive and threatening calls. Many of the callers repeated John and Ken’s exact words, and then wished death upon Mr. Cabrera and/or threatened his life and his physical safety. And indeed, many callers directly referenced John and Ken in their nasty messages.
NHMC and a number of partners have decided that enough is enough and we are launching a campaign to remove John & Ken from the radio and TV so that they will no longer harm our community.
Participating Organizations in the Boycott:
- Central American Resource Center (CARECEN)
- League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC)
- United Church of Christ, Office of Communications, Inc.
- Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD
- Center for Community Change
- Council of Mexican Federations (COFEM)
- Mexican American Opportunity Foundation (MAOF)
- National Immigration Law Center (NILC)
- National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC)
- National Immigration Forum
- Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA)
- Hermandad Mexicana
- California Immigrant Policy Center
- America’s Voice
- National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO)
- Future of Music Coalition
- Media Literacy Project
- Center for New Community
- El Centro de Accion Social
- Alliance for Community Media
ONLINE: www.nhmc.org www.KFIAM6400.com