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Did Jack E. Jett Lose His Clear Channel Radio Gig Because He’s Gay? Or Because He Said ‘Cock’?

Jack E. Jett, the radio host and Queerty commenter known as Jack E. Jett, was sending around emails earlier this month announcing his exciting new gig: He was graduating from radio host job on Dallas’ PrideVision to take a gig with CNN Radio 1190 AM, owned by Clear Channel. He was supposed to start on Monday. But as swiftly as Jett told supporters about the news, Clear Channel nixed its agreement. Because Jack is a … homosexual?

Perhaps. Or perhaps because he swears too much.

The colorful radio host was dismissed from his five-days-a-week, two-hours-a-night gig with CNN/Clear Channel after, in an interview promoting the show, he used naughty words:

Now, [Jack] has to figure out how to do a two-hour show. Five nights a week. Which’ll be no easy task: Having once co-hosted his old Rational Radio talk show — for which the guests were Al B. Sure!, Bob Barker, Gennifer Flowers and Joe the Plumber — let me say, Jack takes his odds-and-sods line-up very seriously.

“That’s the big challenge,” Jack says. “I don’t just go in and talk on the mike while I’m jacking my cock. I research. I want to have as many eclectic guests as I do and be able to do that with less research.”

That “cock” jab was over the line for Clear Channel’s Dallas chief J.D. Freeman, who quickly canceled his deal with Jett.

Says Jett in a statement to Queerty:

I am saddened and angered as I write this note about what I perceive is some pretty blatant homophobia by Clear Channel Radio. I signed a contract to do a weekday talk show on CNN 1190 AM, from January 26 onwards. There was absolutely no morals clause in my contract, and either party could get out the contract with a written two-week’s notice.

This past week, I was interviewed by a local alternative weekly newspaper; while discussing the amount of research I put into my show, I used some colorful language. It was language that was discussed in paper, not on the air. The CNN program director claimed that prior to reading the article, he was unaware that I was about to begin a show at his station during the afternoon drive. Therefore, after reading the article, he found my number and canceled my show without regard to our contract.

Those who have listened to my previous radio show or watched my television show know that I take pride in preparing for my shows by thoroughly researching each guest prior to interviewing them. I had two weeks’ worth of top-notch guests confirmed and had worked hard to create a show that would be entertaining to everyone, but as I said in the press release, geared toward the GLBTQ community. I thought this was a major step forward for me and for Clear Channel.

When I called Mr. J.D. Freeman on his obvious homophobia, he feigned being hurt that I would suggest such a thing. I asked him three times if he was homophobic and while he never denied it, he refused to admit it. He simply said that he doesn’t have to answer me. To me, this was lying by omission. He was far more concerned that I might be taping our conversation.

Assuming, for the moment that he is not homophobic, then are employees required to use only certain words, and limit their vocabulary even when no morals clause has even been discussed or included in the contract? Should every employee be fired for saying something the boss finds distasteful, and if so, just who is it that determines distasteful language?

If that’s true, that Jett didn’t have a morals clause, then Clear Channel is a stupider company than we assumed. Everyone knows a morals clause is the easiest way to dismiss talent for any reason. How do you think all of Tiger Woods’ sponsorships walked away from their marketing pacts unscathed? It might leave Jett open to a solution in litigation, but it would be too bad if he had to head down that road. In the the meantime, what are we going to do with our Jett Radio?

By:           editor editor
On:           Jan 29, 2010
Tagged: , , , ,
  • 5 Comments
    • merkin
      merkin

      How does a program director not know someone is starting a new show on their channel? I dont think this is a case of homophobia though–it sound like someone gave Jett the green light without clearing it with the big boss.

      Jan 29, 2010 at 9:41 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • terrwill
      terrwill

      He’s always going off half cocked…………. : P

      Jan 29, 2010 at 9:50 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • BoXing
      BoXing

      What happened to his chest? It looks like he was sawed in half?

      Jan 29, 2010 at 2:15 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Geoff M
      Geoff M

      I worked for Clear Channel for almost 15 years…in radio. Great company benefits…….blatant homophobia.

      Jan 29, 2010 at 2:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TommyOC
      TommyOC

      @BoXing: I was going to ask the same thing… but I’m assuming at some point in his life (perhaps early, early on) he had an open-heart surgery. The scar runs the length of his ribcage, right down the middle. It’s where they’d cut you to open your ribcage to access your heart (or lungs, for that matter).

      Jan 29, 2010 at 2:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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