DJ’sremark on Ledger Hurtful
On the day of actor Heath Ledger’s death, I happened to scan past the Russ Martin daily talk show broadcast on radio station KLLI 105.3 FM. As the news of his tragic death was emerging, radio DJ Russ Martin sarcastically implied on the air that Ledger died of AIDS.
Russ Martin has used the word “fag” on countless occasions. He obviously caters to a certain audience that likes this kind of humor.
My concern is that the general public is unaware, or at the very least, unconcerned about what I consider to be hate speech. Later that night, I called the radio station to complain and was told to call back the next day to file my complaint with the management.
The next day, I was unable to get through. I called and spoke with a news reporter with Channel 5, the local NBC affiliate, and was told it was “none of their affair.”
I believe in free speech. But every word spoken has repercussions. Out of frustration and anger I am writing this letter to the editor.
Russ Martin insulted Heath Ledger and made light of the suffering of countless AIDS victims. He should be allowed to speak freely, but he must accept and be held accountable for the harm his words cause.
TO SEND A LETTER:
We welcome letters from readers. Shorter letters are more likely to be printed, as are those that address only a single topic. On some weeks we receive more letters than we
can print. In that case, we print a representative sample. Letters are subject to editing for length and clarity, but we attempt to maintain the writer’s substance and tone. Include your home address and a daytime phone number for verification. Send letters to the senior editor, preferably by e-mail (email@example.com). Letters also may be faxed (214-969-7271) or mailed (Dallas Voice, 4145 Travis St., Third Floor, Dallas, TX 72504).
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 8, 2008