Friday, July 24, 2009

KSFO's anti-gay rights host Brian Sussman: The New Anita Bryant!

Beach Blanket Babylon
Jo Schuman Silver, President, Steve Silver Productions Inc.

Dear Jo:

Are you aware that you advertise on KSFO, where host Brian Sussman attacks gay activists on the air and actively works to deny gays equal rights? Sussman has stated that gay rights activists are out to "completely destroy and pervert this country". On July 10th a caller, Steve in Fairfield, asked this question:

"Brian, can I marry the person I’m in love with?" Sussman responded,

NO YOU CAN’T YOU JERK! Now listen to me! No you can’t jerk! Now listen to me right now. Don’t play this game with me Steve. What if you’re in love with two people? My guess is as a homosexual man you’ve been in love with a hundred how many are you in love with right now Steve? HOW MANY!?

SIF: Here comes the name calling.

BS: Can you marry all of them Steve? No. You. Can’t. You have to marry somebody of the opposite sex they have to be over the age of 18 you cannot marry somebody of family and you can only marry one at a time. We all have the same rules and regulations Steve, that’s where it stands. You lose the argument and you’re going to lose at life my friend with that kind of an attitude because your particular kind can’t reproduce! Get him off the line.

808-5600 on KSFO.
(Audio link mp3) (Audio link Windows)
(complete call Audio link MP3) (complete transcript link)

A host shouting someone down on right-wing talk-radio may seem business as usual, but Sussman also actively uses the power of his microphone to attack advertisers whose views don't match his.

Last November when KSFO advertiser PG&E donated money to support the right for gays to marry, Sussman "outed" them on the radio and told his listeners to purchase the services of another vendor. Listen to him tell listeners how to leave PG&E for another company (audio Windows mp3).

When Beach Blanket Babylon was advertising last November Sussman fortunately missed the donation made by David Lincoln King, your General Manager. If he had spotted it, would King have been lumped in with others Sussman believes are out to "destroy and pervert this country"?

Sussman says that gays are not equal to straights because they "can't perform the marriage act that we call the union." (audio links short long)

Sussman attacks gays in other areas as well. Sussman believes that "billions of dollars are wasted to fight AIDS" (audio link) . I believe your late husband and BBB founder, Steve Silver, would have disagreed.

Knowing his shouted views and financially damaging actions to advertisers, do you still choose to advertise on the show? But wait, there's more!

The host who often reads your commercials is traffic and weather man "Officer Vic", (audio link). Listen as Sussman and "Officer Vic" mock and denigrate members of the GLBT community and their fight for equal rights. (audio link)

As an organization that uses satire and knows what's funny and what crosses the line, I think you can see both the failure of humor and the offensiveness in that banter. Is this who you want as the voice of Beach Blanket Babylon?

And if you consider moving to other programs on KSFO please note the other people in their line up, do you really want to be associated with Dr. Laura, Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity?

When it comes to political speech the First Amendment talks about what the government can and can't do, but as Matt Zimmerman from the Electronic Frontier Foundation said, "While such radio personalities certainly have a right to air their views, the First Amendment says nothing about a right to advertiser-subsidized speech."

When you sponsor this show you are giving your tacit approval to these views.
You are an advertiser, not the government. You can choose to withdraw your financial support, which is your right and it doesn't limit their speech.

I recently watched the movie "Milk" about assassinated gay activist Harvey Milk. Listen to Sussman on a proposed Harvey Milk Day: "That's how we should probably commemorate Harvey Milk Day, pooper scooper day." (audio link)

That is his idea of humor, but what is not funny is that the new Anita Bryant is broadcasting out of San Francisco on a station with SF in the call sign and it is all financed by local San Francisco sponsors who are unaware of his comments. Now that you are aware, I urge you to reconsider your advertising on KSFO. Please let me know what action you choose to take regarding future advertising on KSFO.


Gary Peden
, Treasurer, Steve Silver Productions Inc.
David King, Secretary, Steve Silver Productions Inc.
Kate Kendell, Executive Director, National Center for Lesbian Rights
Calla Devlin, Communications Director, National Center for Lesbian Rights
Kevin Kopjak, Charles Zukow Associates


Blogger willf said...

What a nice, succinct, professional letter, I hope you get a response.

5:03 AM  
Blogger Alice said...

Hey Spocko...

Remember you from MRR and

Don't know why you crossed my mind now but...

Hello..and hope you're healthy and well...

All Good Things,

3:16 AM  
Blogger Patricia Meyer, Phd. said...

spocko -

Well done. But why stop there? Sussman is a conservative jerk-off, an insult to caring, progressive people throughout our region. Let's write to all the advertisers on his show. They'll poop their pants when they get the message: The gay community in the Bay area is a powerful economic force.

1:03 PM  
Blogger ciocip said...

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12:27 AM  

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