To: Stu Epperson (Chairman of the Board of Salem Radio)
CC: Ed Atsinger III, Joe Davis, Russ Hauth, Richard Trejo, Robert Mesop Jr.
March 1, 2009
Re: Contractual issues and Christian integrity
Dear Mr. Epperson:
In your letter dated February 23, 2009, your interpretation of my contractual agreement with New Inspiration Broadcasting Company Inc., a subsidiary of Salem Communications Corporation is problematic and confusing.
From the beginning of my discussions with Salem Radio executives that led to the decision to offer me a contract I made it abundantly clear that I am among the rapidly growing number of Christians, activists, radio hosts, pundits, legal experts and pastors who are profoundly skeptical of the ethics and integrity of various prominent personalities with whom Salem Radio and Townhall.com have working agreements. Included on this list are Jay Sekulow, Hugh Hewitt, Michael Medved, Tom Minnery and Tony Perkins. These Salem programming personalities were all given irrefutable proof that former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney:
• lied brazenly to disguise his direct, proactive role in the illegal creation of homosexual “marriage”;
• lied brazenly to avoid responsibility for signing into law government-funded abortion-on-demand;
• cited a non-existent law to force Catholic Charities to give foster and adoptive children to homosexuals even when normal mother-father families were lined up to take them;
• boosted funding for pro-homosexuality brainwashing of children starting in kindergarten;
• lied about the law, over-ruled his own commissioner of health and illegally ordered Catholic Hospitals to issue abortion pills, crushing religious freedom;
• unconstitutionally refused to enforce the parents’ rights laws for his entire time as governor — even when a father was in hand-cuffs and in jail for defending his 5-year old son from pro-homosexuality indoctrination in a public kindergarten under Mitt Romney’s legal authority.
In discussions with Salem executives on numerous occasions I have frankly mentioned these things about Romney and the taking of bribes and lying on his behalf by persons heard on Salem Radio. I told these Salem executives bluntly that if Salem put my program on the air I would talk about these things and that Salem management would not muzzle me. I have also published these things in articles at your subsidiary Townhall.com both before and after the signing of this contract. Obviously, if your subsidiary Townhall.com chose to publish such criticisms, both before and after the signing of the contract, no sane person could conclude that the contract prohibits the dissemination of these sad facts via Salem Communications media.
In light of the entire history of Salem executives having been informed in advance, and of your subsidiary having published the very kind of information to which they now object, am I now to believe that those same Salem executives now interpret our contract as an agreement on my part to participate in an ongoing deception of Salem audiences?
The Salem executives with whom I spoke on many occasions had many opportunities to say that a Salem contract would compel me to betray Salem Radio listeners and Townhall.com readers as other Salem radio personalities have. Instead, they stated their commitment to the same Christian values that I hold dear. They expressed only affirmation and respect for my firm commitment not to deny their audience the truth that they are entitled to hear on Christian radio.
On this basis, one could only understand the clause in the contract “not to take any action to discredit, dishonor, or otherwise disparage Station or Licensee, its subsidiaries, affiliates, or affiliated entities” to mean that I was agreeing to be truthful, forthright and honest, at all times respecting Salem Radio audiences’ right to know the truth.
In fact, would not any reasonable and honest person say that taking bribes and/or lying on Salem radio stations and at Townhall.com to cover up a particular politician’s responsibility for homosexual “marriage” and adoption, funding the daily killing of babies, and the pro-homosexuality brainwashing of children brings extreme discredit and dishonor and disparages Salem Communications?
In contrast to Hewitt, Sekulow, Perkins, Medved and Focus On the Family, I held strong to the moral and spiritual values and integrity that your audience expects from Salem and its companies. And while Sekulow, Hewitt, Perkins, Medved and others are furious that I have not joined them in their deception, my refusal to do so has brought credit and honor to Salem, as shown by the listeners’ comments I receive on a regular basis. Here are several which I grabbed hastily:
“…It is great to hear someone speaking the truth!…”
“…After listening to your show w/Dr. Alan Keyes, that BEL linked to earlier this month, I was encouraged to hear your passion for truth and would like to be able to listen to your shows from CDs and my Mp3 player. I hope you have a solution for me!!!!…”
“…It is becoming increasingly difficult to discern the truth of information on a daily basis. While the mainstream ‘conservatives’ treat us like idiots, thank you for putting it all (and yourself) out there on the line…”
Are you now saying that you want me to forsake my commitment to bring credit and honor to Salem Communications and instead to begin cheating your audience of the truth that I had been unreservedly offering at the time Salem executives entered into this contract with me? Are you now asking me to betray, discredit and dishonor Salem Communications — as Hugh Hewitt, Tony Perkins, Jay Sekulow, Focus On the Family and Michael Medved have done? Are you now asking me to betray the commitments that God requires — as Hugh Hewitt, Tony Perkins, Jay Sekulow, Focus On the Family and Michael Medved have done?
I have fully complied with our written contract and I suggest that the problem lies not with me, but with those who have not. The above-mentioned Salem personalities have brought Salem Communications and its affiliates into gross disrepute among Christians, social conservatives and the overwhelmingly pro-life, anti homosexual marriage Salem radio audiences. Apparently, they have also harmed Salem stockholders.
My hope is that this letter was sent to me in error. If so, please know that I will fight with you on the side of truth, and that I hope that you in turn, will do the same with me.
Your Brother in Christ,
1The word of the LORD came to me: 2 “Son of man, speak to your people and say to them, If (a watchman) 3…blows the trumpet and warns the people, 4then if anyone who hears the sound of the trumpet does not take warning…his blood shall be upon his own head.
6 But if the watchman…does not blow the trumpet…and the sword comes and takes any one of them, but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand.
7 “So you, son of man, I have made a watchman for the house of Israel. Whenever you hear a word from my mouth, you shall give them warning from me. 8 If I say to the wicked, O wicked one, you shall surely die, and you do not speak to warn the wicked to turn from his way, that wicked person shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand. 9 But if you warn the wicked to turn from his way, and he does not turn from his way, that person shall die in his iniquity, but you will have delivered your soul. — Ezekiel 33
Update: Salem’s Response
*I received another letter shortly thereafter telling me that by “speaking negatively” about Jay Sekulow that my programming was being taken off the air:
“…On March 1,2009, during your program on KDAR(FM), you and your invited guests again made negative remarks about Jay Sekulow as well as other Salem programmers including Focus on the Family. These remarks constituted a breach of the Time Brokerage Agreement. Therefore, as a result of this breach, New Inspiration Broadcasting Company, Inc. is hereby terminating the Time Brokerage Agreement, and the “Truth and Hope with Gregg Jackson” will no longer air on KDAR (FM), with the March 1,2009 program as the last broadcast under the Time Brokerage Agreement.
Very Truly Yours,
Salem Communications Corporation, Robert B. Mesrop Jr. Corporate Cousel.”
And there you have it. I was essentially thrown off the air on a “Christian” radio station not for lying or slandering any of my fellow Salem hosts and programmers, but for telling the truth about them, which, evidently, Salem “Christian” Radio considers to be “negative.”
Now everybody knows where Salem “Christian” Radio stands.
They have made their decision to continue taking money from those who took blood money from Mitt Romney and who have continued to cover up his toxic left wing legacy as they continue to mislead millions of Christians in their audience by portraying Romney as a pro-family, pro-life conservative.
And they have chosen to get rid of me—the one host who was telling Christians the truth on Salem Radio about the wolves in sheep’s clothing.
By the way, it’s important to note that nobody from Salem Radio ever disputed anything I have ever said on the air.
No doubt the mission of my program “Truth and Hope” (“to advance truth no matter where it takes us”) is incompatible with Salem Radio’s overall vision and agenda which is decidedly different.
I sincerely pray for Stu Epperson (who happens to be a staunch Mitt Romney supporter), Ed Atsinger and the rest of the Salem management team.
They are playing a dangerous game with eternal consequences.
Can’t say that I didn’t warn them…
Here are the last 2 hours of my last show that Salem considered to be “negative” and a violation of my contract. Listen for yourself to decide if what I and my guests said “dishonored” or brought “disrepute” on Salem Radio in any way.
Hour #1 with Steve Deace
Hour #2 with John Haskins
If you would like to contact any of the Salem Radio executives to voice your opinion, here are their e-mail addresses:
Stu Epperson, Chariman of the Board: firstname.lastname@example.org
Joe Davis, President of Salem Radio: email@example.com
Ed Atsinger, Founder of Salem Radio: firstname.lastname@example.org
Richard Trejo, Station Manager KDAR: email@example.com
Hugh Hewitt, Salem Radio/Townhall: firstname.lastname@example.org