A recent apology by conservative radio talk-show hosts John & Ken (KFI AM 640) expressed some “regret” for broadcasting the phone number of an immigrants' rights advocate who subsequently fielded hate-filled calls.
But that wasn't enough to keep major advertisers from leaving the show following a campaign by the National Hispanic Media Coalition, which argues that John & Ken have exhibited a strong history of anti-immigrant, anti-Latino fervor.
The latest advertiser to bail?
The carmaker tweeted, ” … We got this feedback early and quickly contacted the local dealer group that purchased the ad buy. They are canceling.”
We were the first to report that three major advertisers were set to pull out of the show. That number ended up being four (Verizon and AT&T Wireless as well as Vons and Ralphs), and now it's five.
The NMHC has had John & Ken in its sights for a while. “They talk about anchor babies and how Latinos are taking away your child's education,” org president Alex Nogales told us earlier this month.
But broadcasting the phone number of activist Jorge-Mario Cabrera appeared to be the last straw.
He received messages like this one:
Hi, this message is for Mr. Cabrera. Listen, you pile of garbage…You need to pack your [expletive] up and go back to wherever it is you came from. Nobody wants you here. You are invading the legal people that are in this country and ruining this country. I hope you choke in your own vomit.
Subsequently NHMC started an online campaign and even protested outside John & Ken's studio.
In their apology last week, John & Ken sounded defiant:
John and Ken are being attacked by the NHMC because of their outspoken opposition to the California Dream Act. Not only is this an issue over which reasonable people disagree, it is also one that sparks strong feelings. Taking a stand is their job – and their right in a democracy like ours. Their opposition to the Dream Act is not “hate speech,” it is protected speech.