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Another voice gone

ELINOR TATUM Publisher and Editor in Chief | 5/3/2012, 12:41 p.m.
When guidance counselors need to care

Last week it was announced that WKRS, or "Kiss FM," an Emmis station, owned by whites yet still having a Black voice, was to go dark as a station with an urban format. This change will effectively make New York, with more than 2 million Blacks, a city with only one urban radio station. Emmis leased the signal to ESPN. So while there are now several sports radio stations in NYC, there is only one with an urban format, and none of the stations on the FM dial are now majority Black-owned. MYF bought the intellectual property of WKRS, combining the legacies of WBLS and Kiss.

So another voice is silenced. Again there is one less voice that our people can communicate with and depend on for information and support, and even the remaining station is not under full Black control.

Already, we have lost so much of our ability to communicate with one another, but we have still have so much more to lose.

As we watch this media landscape change, we must take note that we cannot lose any more. We must protect what media we have left and make sure it thrives. We must implore Rev. Sharpton to re-engage the Madison Avenue Initiative to go toe-to-toe with the agencies and companies that hold so much of our future in their hands. We must fight to keep our media legacies alive; we must fight for the survival of the voices of our people. There is a crusade against our voices. We cannot be silenced, we will not be silenced. We will speak truth to power and make a difference in the lives of those we continue to serve.