Smerconish settled in, did his usual show and emerged unscathed. But his concern is shared by broadcasters from coast to coast as a strange sound echoes across the nation’s airwaves: radio hosts walking on eggshells, trying to avoid Imus’ fate.
Jeff Vandergrift and Dan Lay could not, and now they’re scrambling for work.
The co-hosts of “The Dog House with JV and Elvis” were permanently pulled last weekend from WFNY-FM for an offensive prank phone call, replete with ethnic and sexual slurs, made to a Chinese restaurant.
Their dismissal demonstrated how heightened awareness by advertisers and management, coupled with offended listeners no longer content with “slap on the wrist” punishments, has turned the DJ’s chair into a hot seat in recent weeks.
This is my favorite bit:
Even the most unapologetic of hosts were now apologizing — although not sincerely enough to spare them a suspension. Gregg “Opie” Hughes and Anthony Cumia were excoriated for laughing as a homeless man fantasized about raping Condoleezza Rice and Laura Bush during the bad boys’ XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. program.
Hours before their Thursday apology, the pair had griped about the crackdown on content when an ethnic joke was censored from their syndicated New York-based terrestrial radio program. What was next, wondered Cumia — “getting called out by a chicken for doing `why does a chicken cross the road’ jokes?”
Because women and minorities are just like animals, in a way. And rape? That’s just like a knock-knock joke.
What the fuck is wrong with these people, that this is hard work? And that they equate being told that “people don’t like it when you refer to entire ethnic groups by using oudated and nasty stereotypes” with being persecuted like the Hollywood Ten? Sack up, would you please?