Buffoonery Over Activism: Do we really prefer music and jokes over content?
Last Thursday The Michael Baisden Show was taken off the air in New York and at the time, we were the number 1 rated urban adult show—that’s a fact! There was no notice, no thank you, not even an opportunity to say goodbye to the listeners who were responsible for this show going national in the first place. It’s a damn shame and it’s disrespectful! Not only to me, but also to my listeners. But, unfortunately, that’s the radio business!
This is becoming a disturbing trend in urban radio. Wherever there is a voice that informs and uplifts the community, it is silenced—replaced by personalities who are told to play the music and shut up…or else. Or keep cracking jokes and people won’t realize they’re not really saying anything of importance.
Many program directors see the handwriting on the wall. As radio becomes more music driven and less focused on the needs of the community, what are they going to need you for? Eventually they will be programming every city with the same music from one location; it’s already happening.
But some in this business are so blinded by their egos they fail to realize that their success is linked with my success. Just as the success of morning shows and afternoon shows are linked. Radio is a team sport; if I lose, the affiliates lose and, more importantly, the listeners lose.
And although you may think it’s the corporations or “The Man” that are trying to silence black voices, we have black station owners, program directors and general managers who would rather play music all day than to inform and uplift the community.
What they fail to realize is that once it’s all about the music, people can go anywhere to hear songs, but this is the only place on mainstream FM radio where you can hear about starting your own business, Domestic Violence, Child Molestation, Mentoring and Missing Children, as well as hear the President on a regular basis—and that’s on The Michael Baisden Show!
To the owners and management of WBLS, I know you’re listening; your timing could not have been worse. New Yorkers will never accept your decision not to put on my show without a fight! We need to be united right now to fight to re-elect our President and to fight against the crazy and deranged Republican policies, like voter suppression, Violence Against Women Act, forcing women not to have abortions even if they’ve been raped. And the war on men of color that incarcerates them at a rate of 5-10 times more than that of white men for the same or lesser crimes. Now, that ain’t right!
Besides, who will sound the alarm in New York, Dallas, Houston, Tampa, Indianapolis and other cities when the next Jena 6 happens or the next Trayvon Martin? I’ve got nothing but respect for my peers, but this is the show that sets it off! We hit the topics hard and we don’t stop until we get results!
This is the worst time in history to take away our power! And I don’t want to hear any nonsense about the show not performing; we were the number 1 urban adult show in New York when you refused to put us on WBLS! Now that’s some Fra-ger-nackle Bull!
The only verdict that I will accept is the verdict from the people. Until then, I will fight to stay in touch with the people who need me to be a voice for injustice and talk about the controversial topics that no one else will touch!
You can listen to The Michael Baisden Show live by downloading the TuneIn Radio App and search Michael Baisden Show from 3-7pm EST. And follow us on Facebook and Twitter @BaisdenLive.
Please go sign the petition to keep us on in the largest radio market in the country! More than any other urban radio program in history, we truly do give power to the people! All People!