NC Clear Channel host angers Native Americans

by Danny Hooley, News and Observer

Bob Dumas of G-105 is in hot water again.

The host of the WDCG "Bob and the Showgram" morning show and his on-air crew angered members of North Carolina's Native American community with jokes during a broadcast on Tuesday.

In the radio segment, Dumas and co-hosts kidded an intern about her upcoming marriage to a Lumbee Indian. Dumas joked that Indians are "lazy" and that "a lot of Indians live on the reservation." He also asked whether the groom's grandfather would stand on the side of the road "with a single tear."

Co-host Mike Morse asked: "After you guys get married, are you going to have a tepee-warming party?"

The intern played along with the joking and even laughed.

Not everyone thought it was funny, though. Audio of the comments circulated through e-mail messages that reached Native Americans throughout the state.

Complaints have been sent to the FCC and Clear Channel Communications, which owns G-105.

WDCG General Manager Dick Harlow had no comment for The N&O on Friday. Just before 3 p.m., he released this statement on the station's Web site (www.g105.com):

"WDCG apologizes to any listener that may have found remarks or recordings played Tuesday, April 1st, 2008 during Bob and the Showgram to be offensive, derogatory or insensitive. WDCG does not condone inappropriate behavior, language or insensitive remarks."

Gregory Richardson, executive director of the North Carolina Commission of Indian Affairs, said he doubts the apology will be sufficient for everyone.

"I would say it's a start," Richardson said. "I can't speak for the American Indian population. [WDCG is] just saying they're going to apologize, and that's all they're going to do. I would say that's a very lukewarm apology."

Before the Web post went up, Paul Brooks, chairman of the North Carolina Commission of Indian Affairs, released a statement lambasting "Bob and the Showgram" for the Tuesday remarks, as well as a history of "derogatory and insultuous comments against American Indians, African Americans, Asians and Hispanics."

Brooks also referred to disciplinary actions taken against Dumas in the past, including a 2003 suspension for urging motorists to terrorize bicyclists on the road.

Those disciplinary actions, Brooks wrote, were "to no avail."

article originally published at http://www.newsobserver.com/2766/story/1025348.html.

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