KYCA Host, City Councilman Fired After Racial Remarks
June 7, 2010 at 4:15 AM (PT)
SOUTHWESTERN BROADCASTING Talk KYCA-A/PRESCOTT, AZ has fired afternoon host STEVE BLAIR -- who is also a City Councilman -- after allegedly making racially charged comments about a mural painted on the side of elementary school, reports the TUCSON SENTINEL. His campaign purportedly led to racist epithets being lobbied at the mural painters and children volunteers. School officials subsequently asked the painters to lighten the complexion of the dark-skinned kids.
BLAIR started complaining about the mural on his radio show, demanding its removal, complaining that the depiction "defaces" the building and that a black child was prominently displayed. Among his on-air comments were: "I will tell you depicting a black guy in the middle of that mural, based upon who's President of the U.S. today ... To depict the biggest picture on the building as a black person, I would have to ask the question: Why?"
I will tell you depicting a black guy in the middle of that mural, based upon who's President of the U.S. today ... To depict the biggest picture on the building as a black person, I would have to ask the question: Why?
The artist, R.E. WALL, said the mural was created to promote "green" environmentalism, and he used pictures of actual school children as models for those depicted in the mural. (The child with the "biggest picture," in fact, was of Mexican heritage.) The mural design was chosen out of several versions by the school children and administration.
Nevertheless, since BLAIR's crusade, the artists -- and volunteer children who helped paint it -- were on the receiving end of racial taunts by several residents passing by in their cars. At that point, the artists were told by school officials to lighten up the darker-skin kids' complexions, ostensibly to "make them look happier."
Once the story began to hit the newswires, KYCA informed BLAIR that he was being let go.
[There have been a number of remarks on Talk Radio lately that have been controversial. Do you think it's simply an attempt at getting attention, or do you believe the hosts believe what they've said? Please share your thoughts with the ALL ACCESS community below.]