Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Shots Fired at KPFT: Zydeco on Zydeco violence?

posted by Free Press Houston @ 7:55 AM

At about 1 AM Monday, a gunshot was fired from a passing car into the KPFT control room. It penetrated thru both panes of the outer window, entered the room and smashed into the control room door on the far side of the room. Police were summoned and have begun an investigation. Fortunately, Mary Thomas of "Zydeco Pas Sale" were not hurt, thought the bullet passed within feet of her. KPFT was bombed by the Klan years ago, Bricks thrown at front window and other acts have gone down recently. Hate calls are common.

Read the full story


At August 14, 2007 at 9:26 AM , Anonymous terdblossom said...

Coincidence this happened during the pledge drive?This just may be the best thing to happen to KPFT since being bombed off the air by the Klan. Lord knows they have been capitalizing on this for the last 48 hours.

At August 14, 2007 at 9:31 AM , Anonymous melvin said...

Give me break! How conspiratorial can you get?

At August 14, 2007 at 9:33 AM , Anonymous terdblossom said...

stranger shit has happened.

At August 14, 2007 at 12:34 PM , Anonymous bb said...

A more accurate theory is one of the revolutionary wannabes who doesn't think KPFT is radical enough decided to send a message.

On that topic, thanks to the Free Press for publishing hate pieces against KPFT. Looks like someone decided to heed the advice in the Free Press last issue and do their part to change programming.

Nice job guys.

At August 15, 2007 at 7:11 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I posted a comment here and it was never approved, so I will restate it in a more productive fashion. I hope it is posted in the interests of free expression.

Free Press recently published an article about KPFT that was extremely negative toward its volunteers, programming and staff. Among the more heinous parts of the article were defending KPFT lawsuit plaintiff Ken Freeland and attacking an underage volunteer by name. Free Press, in not seeking balance to the article, was, to me, incredibly irresponsible.

This was not the first time such an article was printed about KPFT. Free Press has run many factually incorrect articles about KPFT, with messages identical to what just ran.

In the peace scene, there has been an organized effort to get the kind of propaganda against KPFT out to the community to undermine financial support for the station. A small group of people have attempted to use lawsuits, personal attacks and disruption of good organizations to damage a precious station that a few zealots don't see is radical enough or that doesn't put on what they want aired, thus fuck everything else. Free Press has historically fallen in line with this clique.

This week, KPFT was shot up by some idiot. Community speculation varies from a right-wing action to someone finally acting on what Free Press and others have been putting out for awhile: that KPFT isn't radical enough and that it is time to act.

Do people at the Free Press care that most people see them allied with the freepers, anti-semites and other enemies of Houston's only community station? I doubt it. Someone was nearly killed at KPFT this week and the only comment that gets approved is a smarmy, incorrect one claiming the shooting was tied to pledge drive. If anyone posting here listened to the station, you'd know it ended almost half a day before.

Thanks Free Press. Hopefully when someone does get killed, you'll have the sense to not just approve comments about pledge drive. Or maybe just print it beside another of your defenses of Ken Freeland and Dennis Bernstein.

Censorship of rightful criticism of your shitty 'journalism' is childish. Defend what you print if you can, but be honest. If you refuse to approve posts of criticism, say so. I can post them elsewhere, but wanted to give the courtesy to you to reply.

At August 15, 2007 at 3:55 PM , Blogger Free Press Houston said...

Your comment was indeed approved. Sorry about the delay......

You have a rather creative mind to attribute the KPFT shooting incident to an article in a newspaper. You can't honestly be making the enormous leap of logic of blaming that on us? I have heard it all now. No joke.

More importantly, You fail to address a single point in the article and have only come here to make ad hominem attacks and speculate ( more like defecate!). Should 'Radio for Peace' really be dominated by country western music?

Do you homework. The people you mentioned and think we are aligned with, like Freeland, have just as much 'beef' with us as you. Funny, you and the Freeland crowd can find common ground. Sometimes I ask myself: How about fuck him and fuck you and the whole polemic crowd of infighting? It is VERY obvious that your interests lie with people and not the station. KPFT is not fulfilling it's enormous RESPONSIBILITY.

Feel free to call us or send a letter to the editor at


At August 15, 2007 at 4:30 PM , Blogger Said said...

Omar's article is right on when it comes to talking about the disappointments of KPFT. It's without a doubt that KPFT has some quality programs and I listen to it regulary but, I definitely have my reservations about the management.

A little over a year ago, I took part in a program to learn how to do things around the station and evetually run a small segment on open journal. Ernesto was supposed to direct the class but the bulk of it was spent under the instruction of young Luke. Ernesto would hang for a while and chat with us and turn the class over to this 13 year old. I am all for children being involved with the station, but this kid had no idea what he was doing. He may know how to do things around the station and do PSAs and stuff, but he wasn't very interested in getting other people involved or teaching us. It was evident that part of the reason he was so involved in the station was because something was going on between ernesto and his mother. My annoyance with the program and Luke contributed to my apathy for getting more involved.

The station needs to grow up and change its method in reaching out to the real community...most of us aren't old fogies listening to blues music on a sunday afternoon.

At August 18, 2007 at 12:12 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


You have a responsibility to print accurate, ethical articles, and your efforts (almost wholly negative toward KPFT for years) only contribute to a hateful climate. In that sense, you do have a level of responsibility, because Free Press almost solely prints misinformation about a station that has been a target of hate for years. You did it with Dino Maraccio, and continue to do so.

I'm not asking you to be a cheerleader. Making a commitment to telling the story accurately would be nice, but instead you continue to print incorrect and misleading articles, then defend and justify your position by naming things you dislike about KPFT, rather than what you print.

I've done my homework. I have read your paper for several years. When you ran Dino's piece, which claimed a bunch of shows like Alternative Radio had been cancelled when they were still aired, I laughed because you were so clearly disconnected from what you print. Now I'm just asking you to take ownership for what you do.

Your recent piece is almost solely ad hominem attack and speculation. Or is critiquing a news anchor's voice as one for monster truck rallies or the "phenomenally un-friendly receptionist Oxeye" (her name, posted on KPFT's website is Oseye, I think) your idea of principled debate on "RESPONSIBILITY"? Or maybe naming and remarking on a minor's voice and "bad songwriters going through midlife crises" is what you mean by real debate?

While defending the likes of Freeland (funny... could've sworn I'd seen Freeland delivering/working for/with you not so long ago... or should I ask Ken?) and Dennis Bernstein fail to address Freeland's notorious rep in the local peace community as a disruptor, not unlike what he did at KPFT, and Bernstein's sexual discrimination lawsuits, which, in spite of his "actual journalism" (your term) are a slap in the face to strong women like Noelle Hanrahan of Prison Radio (who Bernstein, according to newspaper reports, pledged to "torture"). Your Freeland defense, tagged "Death by Baseball Cap," belittles the experience of the woman, Tucker Bradley, who shares the experience of many women in the community shouted down and verbally/physically intimidated by Freeland over the years, But I guess that's okay, by your omissions.

Out of about 170 hours per week, even including music like Larry Winters, 13 hours could be classified as country and 10 as blues. KPFT broadcasts even more dance/hiphop music (Damage Control, the Groove, SOSRadio, Altenative Scream and probably more), much of which promotes misogyny and violence and is far less a symbol of the "Radio for Peace" you claim alliance with, but no statement about that? I guess someone rapping "I'll do something bad to you/cuz youre a motherf___ing ho" (as I heard once on Damage Control) is far more peace-oriented than the blues? The issue isn't genre, but is what may be played consistent with peace that you and I seem to agree is important.

I could sit here and pick apart other misstatements -- the Democracy Now change was about 2-3, not one, year ago, and fails to mention the program is broadcast twice a day already; the Program Council even has its next meeting posted on KPFT's site now, contrary to your statement; station doors, last I was up there during spring pledge drive, are locked only after hours (not "always locked"); for example -- but I, as a reader, shouldn't have to correct your journalism. THAT IS YOUR JOB. Did anyone bother try confirming half this article, talk to KPFT, or do any research? Like your KPFT piece, I "love" the Free Press, but t took me only a few minutes to Google correct information. What's your excuse?

I'm asking you to quit hiding behind country and things you hate about KPFT, because it doesn't justify the sloppy, false, personal trash you print, particularly if you want people to take what may be substantive in your comments seriously. Contrary to what you claim, my main support is for KPFT rather than its people, and I even may agree with you on some points, but I can't side with you when virtually all of what is printed is inaccurate. Plus, if you're going to post about the shooting up of what's still an important alternative institution in Houston, try to say something of value, instead of approving pledge drive jokes. Maybe you don't know Mary Thomas or care that she was almost shot. Maybe she's another KPFT person you hate. I don't know her either, but have enough of desire for peace to not insult her and her family.

At August 18, 2007 at 1:02 PM , Blogger Free Press Houston said...

Feel as you may. Yet, You still have failed to do your homework.

It is not the quantity of the country, It is the fact that it get's the primo time slots like morning drive time, weekends, etc. Bottom line: young people know KPFT to be a country station, not Radio for Peace.

In regard to Dennis bernstein, he is not the totality of Flashpoint's. One could easily argue that Dahr Jamail is their flagship.

As for Freeland, It has been several years (3) since he has delivered for us or even had contact. Lots of crazies have done delivery for us. Makes not a lick of difference.

As for Democracy Now, Though the time slot change was 2+ yrs ago, the article referenced the sly manuevering of changing it back to drivetime during Amy Goodman's last trip to Houston. man- did you even read the article?

As for Dino's piece, Free Press made a commitment from it's inception to be an open forum and we print local submissions. Period. If you disagree, don't bash us. Particpate. Write something, as you have written you last 2 long-ass diatribes, and submit it and feel free to feel free. This is not the paper for people who bite their tongues or think manners are paramount to truth.

In regard to the doors locked, that is kindof a moot point now as the doors will always be locked now. Too late. trust, I miss the old open climate.

There are soooo many great people that do great work at KPFT that is ovrshadowed by personal beefs, politics, and buddy system programming. If I thought it was some lost cause, we would not even mention it.

Nonetheless, I still can't help but feel like your attacks here are bordering on wanting KPFT to be free from the same criticisms it often opens other up to. Who, oh wise master, should we send our KPFT articles to that can give do their own special version of fact checking? You? Duane Bradley.


Thanks for reading and I hope you can say something nice about us.


At August 18, 2007 at 4:18 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To check facts, ask questions to all involved, and try to put out something that isn't false is basic journalism. You can be as insulting as you want to me -- "wise master" and all -- but you owe your readers accurate information.

I never said KPFT isn't immune from criticism -- it seems to get a lot. I am saying you need to print something that is factually correct and not garbage. While the Free Press may currently have an infatuation with garbage, I "love" you as much as you love KPFT, and expect better.

If you don't think you owe it to your readers to be truthful, say so.

"As for Dino's piece, Free Press made a commitment from it's inception to be an open forum and we print local submissions... This is not the paper for people who bite their tongues or think manners are paramount to truth."

Oh please. I didn't say be polite. I said your brand of truth is filled with misinformation and untruths; and your desire to print everything you get doesn't outweigh listeners' expectation that articles presented as fact aren't simply fairy tales. It's called quality control. If I'm going to read lies and typos, I've got the Houston Chronicle for that.

If the facts and contextual information are secondary to your personal beefs or those of writers, say so. But, for god's sake, don't use truth as an excuse for sloppy work.

As for submitting anything, I point out a slew of mistakes and your reply, rather than saying 'yeah, we should correct that' or acknowledging the numerous errors I noted, is further ripping the only truly independent outlet Houston has, and flinging insults. If the reaction I've gotten from the publisher is what I can expect when contradicting him, why on Earth would I submit anything?

In a few minutes, I was able to google even the most simple information to check facts. But it's not my job to find factual errors in poorly written articles or tell writers to compose a story, ask all parties questions and make an effort. It's yours. You're in charge. Do your job.

At August 18, 2007 at 4:36 PM , Blogger Free Press Houston said...

Fact check on Google? Can't you do better than that?

If google is your fact checker, you can find anything you want!

We DID our homework. We did indeed speak w/KPFT, Ernesto Aguilar, and even checked the station's own programming calendars!

Everything else is just opinion. I guess your opinion is best though.

But let's get to the point. Like the article, hate it, think it's bullshit or not, You are absurd to blame us for the station getting shot up. Can you actually believe that someone read that article and then subsequently decided to shoot at KPFT? More than a month after reading it (It came out June 1)

Your just plain deluded brother.

At August 20, 2007 at 7:16 PM , Blogger Jay Elle Dubya said...

Wouldn't "journalistic integrity" - the kernel of this debate - surely be elevated if bloggers didn't post using the eternal cop-out "anonymous" button?


At August 21, 2007 at 5:54 AM , Anonymous r transom said...

Agreed. Then again, FP printed the article anonymously too.

At August 21, 2007 at 7:54 AM , Blogger Free Press Houston said...

'Belligerent Me' is a name I have used for going on 4 years..Anyone who reads the FP regularly, as anonymous says he does, would know that. Also, PLEASE call Ernesto today and ask him if he ever had a phone conversation with Free Press about his alleged affair, etc. Once again, I invite you to write a rebuttal...or better yet, write a letter to HPD outlining how you think we are responsible for the station getting shot up.

At August 22, 2007 at 8:30 AM , Blogger Free Press Houston said...

Dear Anonymouse-

I would approve your hateful diatribes if you had the gusto to leave your name. First you say I am a liar and never called the station or Ernesto, and then claim I did but not up to your expectations (after verifying). This thread has reached flaming troll status and I will not respond unless you would like to call me directly or come by the office and speak. You would probably be surprised at how much we agree. hence, if you wanna just bombast people and make anonymous attacks, got to www.houston.indymedia.org


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home