- Mark MaysPresident and Chief Executive Officer, Clear Channel
- Tim AltmanCEO, Dawson McAllister Association
- Lisa DollingerCommunications/Media Relations, Clear Channel
Urge Clear Channel to Address Radio Host Who Supports Ex-Gay Therapy
Dawson McAllister is a radio host who takes to the airwaves each week to dispense advice to millions of American young adults. It's a show mixed with advice, counseling, and pop music, drawing a large audience and being carried by more than 160 radio stations around the country, including many Clear Channel stations.
But does Dawson McAllister urge lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young adults to try and cure themselves of their sexual orientation or gender identity? It sure seems so. A recent caller to McAllister's show said that he was a teenager questioning his sexual orientation. What did the counselors with Dawson McAllister's show tell this caller?
Well, they told him that homosexuality was as evil as drug addiction and alcoholism, said that homosexuality was as bad as murder, and said that he needed to be cured. They also referred this caller to an ex-gay organization, Exodus International, that has been involved in places like Uganda in working with legislators to create extreme anti-gay sentiment.
Is this the type of "counseling" that Clear Channel wants to broadcast on their radio networks? Email Clear Channel today and urge them to investigate Dawson McAllister's show. "Counselors" that tell LGBT young adults that they're worse than murderers, and should be cured, have no business being broadcast across mainstream American radio.
- President and Chief Executive Officer, Clear Channel
- CEO, Dawson McAllister Association
- Communications/Media Relations, Clear Channel
Clear Channel is one of the largest distributors for a radio program hosted by Dawson McAllister, a radio host who runs a call-in program geared toward young adults. Each week, McAllister and his radio show helpline counselors reach thousands of young adults, calling in to the show to talk about their problems.
Last week, a caller in Massachusetts called up McAllister's hotline and said that he was struggling with his sexual orientation, and thought that he might be gay. According to the caller, who subsequently wrote a blog entry about the experience, the counselors with Dawson McAllister's radio show told him that homosexuality was just as bad as "murder" or "theft," and believed that gay people were "broken" and in need of a "cure."
The counselors also allegedly referred the caller to an ex-gay therapy organization, Exodus International, which has been roundly criticized by mainstream American health professional groups for engaging in dangerous "therapy" to try and cure gay people. Exodus International also has a history of working in countries like Uganda, where current legislation is being debated that would institute the death penalty for people solely on the basis of their sexual orientation.
I urge you to investigate the helpline behind the Dawson McAllister show. If these counselors are telling LGBT young adults that they need to be cured, and that homosexuality is as evil as "murder" and "theft," they're sending a dangerous message to LGBT youth and creating a culture of ignorance and fear that simply should not be tolerated by Clear Channel. Given that Clear Channel has a very high rating from equal rights organizations like the Human Rights Campaign, I know you respect and value diversity within your work force.
I'd urge you to respect and value diversity among your listeners to. Please investigate the "helpline" behind Dawson McAllister's radio show. To have a radio show, let alone one that bills itself as helping young people, tell gay and lesbian young adults that they are broken and as bad as murderers is simply unacceptable.
Many thanks for your time.
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