On the January 14 edition of Clear Channel's nationally syndicated radio program, “The War Room with Quinn and Rose,” host Jim Quinn made outrageous and defamatory comments about people living with HIV/AIDS and what he called the “homosexual AIDS lobby.” Quinn erroneously compared contagious tuberculosis patients to people living with HIV/AIDS and went on to say, “When you get AIDS, pal, the door opens up to you. You have got all kinds of government goodies, including a maid to clean your house, transportation - I mean it's - there's just a wealth of wonders that come.”
Following our Call to Action, GLAAD allies wrote numerous e-mails to Clear Channel executives and demanded that Jim Quinn be held responsible for his outrageous comments.
As a result, Clear Channel’s Chief Communications Officer, Lisa Dollinger, released the following statement to GLAAD:
Clear Channel doesn't condone Jim Quinn's remarks and we don't share his view. Clear Channel has raised considerable funds and positive awareness for HIV/AIDS and the GLBT community over the years and we will continue to do so. We've spoken with Mr. Quinn about the seriousness of this incident.
While GLAAD appreciates this statement from Clear Channel Communications, we urge the company to live up to its own diversity policy which states in part:
Our ZERO TOLERANCE policy that prohibits discrimination extends beyond our employees, into each and every market in which we conduct business.
If Clear Channel is truly committed to prohibiting discrimination, the company must ask Jim Quinn to apologize for his grossly inaccurate and offensive remarks and ensure that these kinds of defamatory attacks cease in future broadcasts.
Please continue to write to Clear Channel Communications and tell the company that Jim Quinn’s inaccurate and appalling comments are unacceptable and Clear Channel must stop allowing Quinn to perpetuate hatred, fear and misinformation.
Chief Communications Officer
Clear Channel Communications
Programming Senior Vice President
Robert H. Walls, Jr.
Executive Vice President and General Counsel