J.C. Corcoran of Emmis’ Hits KIHT-FM in St. Louis was not happy when a power outage cost himself and his neighbors a chance to watch a portion of the Super Bowl 2/3/08. But his comments about power company AmerenUE ricocheted right back, knocking him of the air.
Ameren has an African American executive, which became fodder for what was called a racially-insensitive joke from Corcoran, who then went on to suggest that he might go to a building adjacent to Ameren’s and begin taking potshots at Ameron employees with an AK-47.
In a letter to employees, Ameron wrote, "..we realize that we are open to criticism about our service, and we are chagrined that J.C. Corcoran and other customers in his neighborhood lost power during a portion of the Super Bowl; however, Corcoran’s remarks Monday morning went far beyond acceptable language."
Corcoran apologized to Ameren and the entire city — we saw footage on a local Fox O&O KTVI-TV — and Emmis has given the DJ a two-week suspension. Ameron said it didn’t ask for that, or anything else, and said "…only time will tell if today’s apology is sincere and if today’s action is appropriate and sufficient to prevent a recurrence."
RBR/TVBR observation: We advocate for the First Amendment in this space all the time. And we are well aware that of all entertainment forms, comedy may well be the most difficult to pull off consistently.
That said, this portion of RBR/TVBR is also not all that far from Virginia Tech. And as Americans, we have been witness to a string of mass-shootings since. It is bitterly ironic that the latest of these has occurred right in KIHT’s back yard. Mass murder just isn’t funny.
We don’t have any boots on the ground in St. Louis, and we understand that in Corcoran’s case this may well have been bad judgment made on the fly in a genuine attempt to be humorous. But we can remember a time when this noxious style of "entertainment" did not exist on the radio dial. We were able to get through the day just fine without knowing that this guy sucks and that guy is a pantload. We would prefer to spend our time with someone who is knowledgeable about and shares our taste in music, is up to date on what’s happening in the area, and has better things to do than spew hatred for four hours daily.