School Leader Wants WHAM's Lonsberry Fired
June 16, 2008 at 4:48 PM (PT)
The Superintendent of the ROCHESTER school system is calling for CLEAR CHANNEL Talk WHAM-A/ROCHESTER host BOB LONSBERRY to be fired for criticizing the system's "Black Scholars Program" and a newspaper story praising pregnant teens who stay in school.
LONSBERRY denounced the newspaper's stories supporting teen mothers who get diplomas, suggesting "we could just tell them they should have left their frickin' pants on, right? Keep your legs together, sweet cheeks, everything will be okay ... 'Oh, I'm so proud. Look how proud I am of you, you're so brave.' No, she's easy, OK? ... You also did something really dumb, which screwed up your life and probably screwed up the life of the child you bore. And, oh, by the way, I'd like to point out that the whole thing is being paid for by welfare, by the taxpayer. So I'm not sure why you get a stinking certificate."
LONSBERRY, who was fired in 2003 over an incident in which he referred to the Mayor of ROCHESTER as a monkey and orangutan but was later rehired, also said that the "Black Scholars" program sets a lower standard and that the bar for achievement should be set the same for everybody. "A B doesn't make you a scholar," LONSBERRY said, adding, "When you praise those who haven't truly achieved ... you end up rewarding something less than true achievement, which means that you kind of dis-incentivize true achievement."
Superintendent JEAN-CLAUDE BRIZARD told NBC affiliate WHEC-TV that "I don't think he has a right to spew that kind of negativity on the radio, and I will call for WHAM's management to remove him from his job." Local ministers also met with WHAM management; WHAM VP/GM KAREN CAREY issued a statement saying "WHAM-A defends the right of its on-air personalities to express their opinions as long as no FCC rules are violated. WHAM-A also defends the right of its listeners to disagree with those opinions. We have extended an invitation to representatives of the ROCHESTER CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT to express their opinions on our station and look forward to productive dialogue about ongoing community issues."