John & Ken Remain Off-Air at KTLA 5 Following Whitney Houston 'Crack Ho' Remark: Latino Group Celebrates | The Informer | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
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John & Ken Remain Off-Air at KTLA 5 Following Whitney Houston 'Crack Ho' Remark: Latino Group Celebrates

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Tue, Mar 13, 2012 at 5:44 PM

click to enlarge JOHN & KEN
  • John & Ken
Updated at the bottom: This isn't over yet. First posted at 12:19 p.m.

A Latino media group today gloated about the absence of conservative radio talk show hosts from their nightly segment on KTLA News, local televisions's channel 5.

The National Hispanic Media Coalition called the John & Ken's two-week absence following a long campaign to take them off the air, and the subsequent backlash against the pair for calling Whitney Houston a "crack ho" following her death, "a victory."

A spokesman for John & Ken originally told the Weekly that ...

... John & Ken would back on during their nightly "Driving it Home" slots on KTLA and that their absence was a matter of a cameraman's availability, or lack thereof.

That was two weeks ago, after the fallout from the pair's "crack ho" remark that put them on the radar of the Black Media Coalition and ended up getting them temporarily suspended from their home base at KFI AM 640 radio.

While the Black Media Coalition brought a lot of heat to the situation, its goal was to see more diversity at KFI. The Latino group has long wanted to see John & Ken leave the air. It has successfully targeted the duo's radio advertisers and has accused the pair of being vehemently anti-immigrant.

Late last year a UCLA study found that the John & Ken radio show was plagued by anti-Latino hate speech, noting that John Kobylt has said things like:

The Mexican diet is what's shot up the obesity rates in Los Angeles. And that's their culture.

Today the NHMC stated that they "applaud" KTLA general manager Don Corsini "for doing the right and moral thing."

What that thing is, however, remains to be seen. It's not clear if John & Ken are permanently over at KTLA. We reached out to John & Ken's spokesman for comment. And we initially called Corsini several days ago and were told he'd get back to us "next week."

Other groups applauded John & Ken's absence. The BMA:

We congratulate NHMC on this victory and we look forward to continuing to work with them and other organizations on diversifying Clear Channel and its flagship station KFI.

BMA organizer Jasmyne Cannick added to the Weekly:

It's interesting to see so many groups who have traditionally either been opposed to one another or just flat out didn't work in concert together come together over the issue of race at KFI and its continued polarization of not just blacks, but Asian Americans, Latinos, liberals, women, etc.

John & Ken were targeted last year for a comment about "Korean painter scam guys," which prompted criticism from some Asian American groups.

Robert J. Kang, a member of the Korean American Bar Association of Southern California's board, said in a statement released today:

The Korean American community stands in solidarity with fellow immigrant groups and communities of color to protest the racist and hate-driven speech that is regularly a part of the John & Ken show. The Korean American Bar Association is committed to working with our partners until the show is pulled of the air completely.

In any case, John & Ken remain missing from the TV airwaves. If anyone spots them, let us know.

[Update at 5:44 p.m.]: After reaching out to three different KTLA managers, we finally got through to the station, which made a few things clear to us:

-The issue of whether John & Ken stay or go has not been decided yet.

-John & Ken's KFI rantings in general are much different than what was presented on KTLA, where a much toned-down version of the duo appeared (true enough).

-The pair was not paid for its KTLA appearances but made them as promotional events for the radio show.

[@dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]

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