Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Ugh... "Mongoloid Mike" - this is unbelievable

A radio station outside Canton, Ohio (Q92.5 FM) is doing a regular contest called, "Mongoloid Mike". The DJ has an individual sing a song as if he has mental retardation and then asks listeners to guess what the "Mongoloid" is singing. If you guess the correct song, you win a prize! Apparently this has been airing for some time now, but only recently has the "developmental delay community" been made aware of it. In the past week, some people have written/emailed/called the station itself but the station didn't seem to care. In fact, the DJs thought that some of the calls and mail were funny. ARC of Ohio also reports that when they responded to the station with a complaint, the DJ told listeners to call the ARC and interrupt their business because they are a bunch of "nut cases".

However, as more and more people complained, and went to their sponsors and complained, the station took notice. The good news: after a blitz by concerned parents and organizations, the radio station indicated it will be taking the segment off the air and will be issuing an on-air apology today. However, if the on-air apology is anything like the on-line apology, I'm not too hopeful. In any event, this nasty piece is off the air.

The on-line apology can be found at: http://www.q92radio.com/ This apology just has a very hollow feel to it... it almost seems like one of those apologies that start "I'm sorry if you feel that way"... it's no apology at all! "We'd like to apologize for any harm done" - no apology for "we did the wrong thing" or "we were insensitive jerks".... "It has been pointed out to us that this is not the proper forum" - ummm... so what IS the proper forum? I'd like to know exactly where is the right place to go to hear jokes like this.

I am so horrified that this kind of stuff still happens - but not really surprised. Jokes about people who are mentally retarded still happen regularly. Just watch the Comedy Network for a short while and eventually you'll see someone making fun of the intellectually challenged. This was just so blatant though.... so obviously designed to make fun of people with developmental disabilities. What concerns me is that the people at the station, particularly the DJ, don't see what's wrong with this. People would "get it" right away if it was a racial slur... call in and pretend to be of African descent.. we could call it "N**ger Name That Tune". But they don't see it the same. And that is very sad.

4 comments:

LeslieAnn said...

OH.MY.GOSH. This is one of those WTF things. How on earth can they find humor in that and how on earth can they JUSTIFY that? And very true that if it were racially motivated, it would have never made it on the air to begin with. Funny how some things are so off limits and some are just "get over it." It's sad.

Overwhelmed! said...

It's outrageous that this radio station got away with such an insulting segment for so long! People just don't get it!

I was sent to your blog by Michelle from Big Blueberry Eyes. I'm about to leave on a 5 day trip but when I get back, I intend to read your blog from start to finish, with comments along the way! I hope you don't mind. :)

Nikki said...

Being a mother of a child with Down Syndrome, I can personally say that I was appalled. It saddens me that in this day and age that people continue to stoop at such a level of ignorance. This DJ, and the radio station itself, is insensitive. Do you mean to tell me that common knowledge doesn't tell you NOT TO DO THIS!!!!!!!!

It saddens me that the radio station does not realize that they impact society. Our children are their listeners, they are role models for our children, and young adults. Media displays an act of power, which encourages others to behave a certain way; regardless if it is right or wrong. It frightens to know that their are people out there that continue to discredit our children. Down Syndrome is only part of my child, it is not my entire child. Our children are smart, and very capable, they work effortlessly in reaching their fullest potential, they struggle to achieve, but they do it. They are our greatest teachers. They teach us humility, and awareness. They are kind and tolerant of others, they defy the odds, and they receive little credit for their achievements. As amazing as our children are, people are still out their stripping them from their dignity as if they are less of a people. They are not less, they deserve much more than this. The least we can do as a society is to strive to give our children what they truly deserve.

It's funny, that this came out right when my child is about to begin public school. Do you know how frightening this is??? It scares me to know that people out their continue to belittle us and then we are forced to send them out into a public environment for least restrictive environment, inclusion and reaching their fullest potential. This radio station has discredited the parents before me who have paved the way for this generation of parents. It's not funny, nor is it comedy, not when you live this world.

I doubt that the DJ has a cousin with Down Syndrome. If he did, then where is Igor's parents and aunt to kick him in the butt. If Igor had a family member with a disability he would have been more sincere in his apology, and maybe not have even put this on the air.

I just want to leave the message that our children are not incapable, they can do everything that we do, it may take a little longer but they do it. And they do it so gracefully. There is greatness in our children and it is up to us to help them shine.

Nikki P

Anonymous said...

Mongoloid Mike has a web page! It is just so sick and disgusting. You can play Name that Tune online with some guy singing like a person with developmental delay. You can buy "Mongoloid" tee shirts and other merchandise. There's a picture of a small school bus and a guy with glasses wearing a helmet. I guess that's supposed to be Mongoloid Mike.