Gay Dallas activist Will Kolb on getting his free speech violated by Fox Radio

Dallas activist Will Kolb

By now you may have heard about the Fox Radio affiliate in Reno, Nev., that canceled a public affairs program because the host had the gall to do an interview with a gay-rights activist who happens to be from Dallas. LGBTQ Nation broke the story Thursday, reporting that the owner of KKFT-FM (99.1) in Reno canceled the “House of Savoy” program hosted by Sean Savoy after Savoy did an interview Aug. 12 with Big D’s Will Kolb. We caught up Friday afternoon with Kolb — a one-time director of development for the Turtle Creek Chorale, DIFFA Style Council member and board member for Resource Center Dallas’ Toast to Life —  who told us it all started with a Facebook post he made at the height of the Chick-fil-A controversy.

“I said something to the effect of, ‘If you’re being called a bigot as a Christian, it’s not because you’re a bigot, it’s because of how you interpret Christianity,’” says Kolb, who considers himself a devout Methodist.

Kolb’s post was shared by hundreds of people all over the world before being removed by Facebook in response to a complaint, Kolb says, but not before it caught the attention of Savoy, an ordained minister who’d been hosting his Sunday night radio show produced by Nevada Matters Media Inc. for about a year.

“I thought it was fairly mundane,” Kolb said of his Aug. 12 appearance on Savoy’s show. “There was nothing really scandalous said. We talked about LGBT politics, marriage equality, the Chick-fil-A issue. I did a show with Richard Curtin [on Rational Radio in Dallas] that I thought was a lot more controversial than Sean Savoy.”

But that was Rational Radio in Dallas, and this is Fox Radio in Reno. Kolb says he was disappointed but not terribly surprised to learn of the decision by KKFT-FM owner Jerry Evans.

“I wasn’t that surprised because it was a Fox network, but at the same time [Savoy has] had discussions about African-Americans, women, so to me this was just blatant, ‘I hate gay people,’” Kolb says. “Even though it’s Fox, it’s still a free speech issue. They basically really wanted to silence my opinion. They want to silence all gay-rights opinions. It’s a shame for the gay community that we can’t even discuss this kind of stuff on certain networks.”

On the bright side, LGBTQ Nation reports that the whole controversy has prompted Savoy himself to come out as gay. Wow! Also, GLAAD has gotten involved, and is encouraging people to contact KKFT at 775-884-8000 or jerry@991fmtalk.com and ask why “House of Savoy” was pulled from the station. Or send a message via Twitter: @991FMTALKNEVADA.

Read Kolb’s Facebook post that led to his appearance on Savoy’s show — and listen to the appearance itself — after the jump.

—  John Wright