The Need for a Black Public Affairs Show at KPFA
by The POCC Minister of Information JR
Recently KPFA radio station, located in Berkeley Ca. has been making headlines in recent weeks for a number of different reasons; most notably among them being the August 20th police beat down of Black programmer, of 12 years, Nadra Foster, after Lois Withers, a member of the KPFA management team called the police on her with approval from Pacifica management, after Foster was accused of using a KPFA telephone for her own personal use. When the police arrived, Foster was thrown to the ground severely injuring her arm, kicked in the head, and put into a strait-jacket like contraption, and hauled off to jail. She has been released, and is still facing five charges from the incident.
On August 23rd, in a separate incident, Black programmer August "Fef Nitti" McCoy, was shot dead in Vallejo. Did you hear anything about these two incidents dealing with Black programmers at KPFA, on Democracy Now, the KPFA Morning Show, or the KPFA News? Hell no. When I asked KPFA news directors Aileen Alfandary and Mark Mericle, and Morning Show Executive Producer Mitch Jesserich, why there hasn't been a story about these issues on their shows, all of them, almost verbatim, explained to me how "this was an internal matter at KPFA that was not news-worthy."
Weeks after the incidents, when I talked to the Executive Producer of Democracy Now Amy Goodman, who was recently arrested at the Republican National Convention, why were the cases of KPFA Black programmers Nadra Foster and August "Fef Nitti" McCoy never reported on, she claimed she did not have any information. I gave her websites where she could inform herself, and still today, weeks after this telephone conversation, nothing has been said on her show, which airs twice on weekdays on KPFA. When she was elegantly arrested, KPFA made a big deal out of it, but they refused to do the same for their own Black programmers, in two incidents that happened, less than 10 days before she was locked up.
So who's job is it to report on issues such as these in the Black community, in and around KPFA, or nationally? A daily or weekly Black public affairs show. That would sound like the proper place for news like this, if not the KPFA news, but the fact is KPFA does not allow for Black people, domestically living in America, to have political talk radio shows on its airwaves. Some KPFA listeners might say, what about the interviews done by Black programmers Greg Bridges, Davey D, Funky Man, Queen Jahneen, Ricky "Uhuru Maggot" Vincent, T-Kash, and Anita Johnson? All of these programmers are regular music programmers who try to make up for the void in Black public affairs on the station, with occasional political interviews in between the songs and poetry that they are scheduled to play.
What about Walter Turner who hosts "Africa Today"? "Africa Today" is a weekly public affairs show about news on the continent of Africa, which sometime spills over into domestic politics. That's as close as KPFA gets to allowing the Black community in its living room to access the airwaves, for organizing purposes, although when fund drives come many of the premiums include Black political giants from this country like Malcolm X (El Hajj Malik El Shabazz), Paul Robeson, the Black Panthers, James Baldwin, and Martin Luther King. It is not important enough for KPFA management to make sure that the masses of listeners get a domestic view of happenings in the Black world from involved Black journalist, but they continue to pimp our struggle with sweet voices pleading for money and an iron glove using our struggle, allowing us none of the social or political benefits of having our own public affairs show on the station.
Many in the Black community have been calling KPFA apartheid radio, for good reason. Even KMEL, the Bay Area based corporate radio station that is owned by the media monster Clear Channel has "Street Soldiers", which is a two hour weekly talk show.
So much for the liberal-progressive feeling that KPFA listeners felt years ago, when they put on their KPFA t-shirt or looked at their station bumper sticker, the racist (they also come in Black face) wolves, that run KPFA, have been discovered in progressive sheep's clothing. Are you ready for the truth? Will you continue to support kkkpfa's style of apartheid radio?
The Minister of Information JR
POCC Block Report Radio