Radio station a source of misinfo

I find it particularly disturbing that in an age of quick information and instant knowledge, a certain radio station and an entire political party, for that matter is degenerating into scare tactics to try to influence voters. A recent television ad run by the supposed "News Radio" station KTRH-AM uses misleading information that has been twisted into an attack on Sen. Barack Obama and the intelligence of citizens of the greater Houston area. It is amazing how long these lies have propagated, and I’d like to take a moment to put these myths into perspective.

First, the ad uses the racial undertones of the phrase "Si, Se Puede!" with Joe Pags saying, "Si, se puede? You running for the U.S. presidency?" If you cannot see the arrogance in this statement, you might as well stop reading this editorial. You cannot disagree with the fact that a significant portion of our society speaks Spanish, and there is nothing lower than insulting another group’s identity based on language. This was not as much a denouncement of Obama as much as it was a denouncement of all Hispanic Americans. This phrase is a uniting call for a certain minority group and you, Pags, will be a minority soon enough. Of course we should have a uniting language, and that language is English, but to insult a culture’s identifying language is insulting the culture itself.

Other low points include showing the infamous picture of Obama on their Web site, hands at his side, during the national anthem. To some, putting your hand over your heart is customary. To others, it is not. This is by no means a testament to a person’s patriotism or love of country.

And the fear-mongering only continues, with images of Louis Farrakhan, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and another infamous picture of Obama while in Somalia, wearing the traditional garb of the region. To me, this shows a complete lack of understanding of the facts and a deliberate attempt to manipulate these images for the sole purpose of misleading voters. Also, it will attract the lunatic fringe of the far right, who seemingly feed off of these types of distortions.

This smut is offensive, and one can only hope KTRH will grow up and learn to use truths, rather than mistruths, to push their rhetoric. This may be a pipe dream, considering the news station’s history, but one must stand up to this type of slander. I hope KTRH will return to reporting real news rather than spreading lies and rumors. Every day will be a sad day for Houston radio as long as these tactics are used.

Majors, a music senior, can be reached via [email protected]

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