Black Community's Radio Killed
Congressman Charles Rangel, State Senator David Paterson, Councilwoman Yvette Clark, Assemblyman Keith Wright, Former Manhattan Borough President C. Virginia Fields, and former Mayor David N Dinkins and many others in positions of supposed influence in the power structure, must be listed amongst the traitors and â€œmisleadersâ€? of our people.
(RIP: Remains of BUFNY's radio station).
On October 22nd, 2006, at 115 Route 23 in
Laying on the ground in front ofÂ the small, but adequate, building that Black United Fund of New York had rented forÂ $625.00 a month to house WCKL 560 AM Radio, bought by BUFNY, early in 2003, under my leadership, as founder and CEO were the total contentsÂ of the radio station.
The landlord, a Mr. Moon, on October 21st, had reluctantly evicted the Black United Fund's radio station, which was then under the control of Attorney General Eliot Spitzer's latest appointed Black board of directors. The cause: non-payment of rent. The landlord said BUFNY owed him rent from December 2005 through October 2006, totaling $6,875.00. The rains also came the night of October 21st, and all of the equipment had been thoroughly soaked â€”drowning good works and more hopes and dreams.Â
On the door of the quaint red building was the sheriff's notice which showed that the seized building had been turned back over to the landlord on the above date. Some of the station's removed equipment included: cabinets, microphones, receivers, transmitters, CD-players, computers, tape decks, speakers, clocks, cables of various kinds, operations manuals books, and other radio broadcasting equipment that I am not familiar with enough to name. In other words, an entire radio stationÂ worth many thousands of dollars, including a $6,000 dish, was thrown on the ground and exposed to the elements, much like trash.Â
The station signal catchment areas are:
We also hadÂ in place and ready to go radio streaming for all who would have preferred or had to listen to WCKL via the Internet throughout the USA and all over the world, and since there was no AM 560 programmingÂ from Catskill intoÂ New York City, we wereÂ prepared to immediately petition the FCC to bring WCKL's diversified programming into the media capital of the world and the center for Black culture.Â Â This was to be a unique experiment in Back empowerment radio under the control of the first black owned not-for-profit radio station in the State of
Looking at a complete radio station on the ground, soaked from rain, I began, again, to wonder what kind of people Spitzer and his Black board and other supportersÂ are, thatÂ willingly, or by their silence, endorsed, such a mean spirited and unnecessary act of destruction. This country talks about freedom and democracy in
While reflecting on the program format emanating from
There was also From the Steps of the Capitol, a show designed to have two of our down-State legislators, like,Â Assemblyman Keith Wright and State Senator David Paterson,Â bringing information from Albany that would let the community know instantly what was going on in the State legislature, e.g., what new legislation was being introduced that would be helpful or harmful to our community.Â Much too often our community is inÂ the dark. By the time we get the news out of
Starting at 1 PM, we scheduled high school football. During the winter, weÂ scheduled high school and Columbia-Greene Community CollegeÂ Basketball. What better way to help bring togetherÂ people and communities inÂ small towns than through sports and building the economy. Plenty ofÂ time remained for other innovativeÂ formats and program content. This initial format had something for everyone.Â
Keep in mind that the Black United Fund was fully approved by the FCC, with working agreements in place, and with one week before going on air, again Spitzer stepped in to wreak even more havoc and destruction.Â
As I moved throughout
It is shameful that Spitzer's originally appointed Black Republican board from Nassau County consisting of Judge Lance Clark, Betty Easley, Delores Kershaw, Briding Newell and William Davis, Jr., and those that followed (Niles Stewart, James Simmons, Glenda Grace, and Renee Tirado),Â who served as Spitzerâ€™s henchman and did his bidding and dirty work,Â have not been fully exposedÂ andÂ and punished for the atrocities that they have committed against the Black community.
Congressman Charles Rangel, State Senator David Paterson, Councilwoman Yvette Clark, Assemblyman Keith Wright, Former Manhattan Borough President C. Virginia Fields, and former Mayor David N Dinkins and many others in positions of supposed â€œinfluenceâ€? in the power structure, must be listedÂ amongst the traitors and â€œmisleadersâ€? of our people.Â
While we are rightfullyÂ concernedÂ about the lack of media outlets to carry our message, it isÂ tragic that those previously namedÂ have aided and abettedÂ in the destruction of BUFNY, its more than $100 million assets base, and, particularly, its Black-owned radio station WCKL. It cannot be denied the fact that our independent leadership and institutions have been attacked, co-opted or outright destroyed has contributed greatly to our position of powerlessness.Â Attorney General Eliot Spitzer heads the list of those that have lead the charge with the support of the false leaders in the Black community â€”the enemies within.Â Â Â Â
In light of the blatant acts of favoritism and gratuitous leniency of Eliot Spitzer in his treatment of the leadership at the World Jewish Congress, the Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club and Air America Radio, and his covering for and, simultaneously, regulating the Bernard and Anne Spitzer Family Trust in his capacity as the Attorney General, there is an identifiable bias towards members of the Jewish community and its institutions.Â This is in direct and stark contrast to the discriminatory treatment by Spitzer of the leadership and institutions in the Black community.Â
The situation cries out for an investigation. The trail of evidence, betrayals, and abuses of power are there for all to see. We call upon the Attorney General to hold accountable and administer justice to the BUFNY board that has allowed the peoples assets to be squandered and destroyed.
Let none dance upon the graves of those who have gone before us and died for our freedoms today.Â No one in the Black community should rest until justice is done.
Kermit Eady is president and CEO of Eady Associates and the Empowerment Institute, also Founder and former president and CEO of Black United Fund of New York. Contributing to this article was Larry Barton, former vice president and general manager at Black United Fund of New York.Â