Boyles says he didn’t mean to pat a bigot on the back

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

If you’re a talk-radio host and you feed on infotainment, you pretty much have to cover the topics people will talk about because you want people to…talk.

But that doesn’t mean you have to embrace bigots, like a gun instructor who says at the conclusion of a radio ad promoting his classes:

“Also, if you are a non-Christian Arab or Muslim, I will not teach you the class.”

If you’re KHOW’s Peter Boyles, and you actually want to have the man who ran the ad, Crockett Keller, on your radio show, you have a few choices.

You can expose and denounce his bigotry, have an even-handed discussion about the ad, or you can cozy up to him.

With Keller on his show Feb. 1, Boyles did the latter.

He didn’t ask his listeners if they thought it would have been okay for Keller not to teach Christians . Or Jews.

He didn’t ask Keller if he’d considered a different closer for his ad, like, “If you’re Jewish, I will not teach you the class.”

Would Boyles have sat in silence if the word “Islam” were changed to “Judaism” and the word “Muslim” to “Jew” in the following statement that Keller made to Boyles on his KHOW radio show?

Keller: I don’t consider Islam as a religion. Now that may sound ignorant. I think in practice it’s more of an ideology and a political entity as opposed to a religious entity… Until the moderate Muslims start picking up and rioting every time their less peaceable brethren make war against us, then we have to do that. You know, we didn’t bomb just Nazi Germany. We bombed the whole place. And I’m afraid that’s what it’s going to take at some point in time if we are going to preserve our way of life. I would like to think that the moderate Muslims would start standing up for the American way, as opposed to Sharia law and the Muslim way. What are they? Are they Muslims first or Americans first?

Boyles said to Keller that he’d heard different reactions from callers to Keller’s advertisement.

Boyles told Keller: “I find myself thinking that what you’re saying is probably closer to the truth, and that’s why it hurts… You da man.”

He closed by thanking Keller and telling him to call if he’s in Colorado so he can “have him in studio.”

I’ve listened to Boyles for years, and I could’t believe that he really felt warmly to Keller.

So I called Boyles to make sure he meant what he said, and I was relieved to find out that he did not.

Boyles said he didn’t remember saying this, and, if he did, he didn’t mean it.

He described Keller as “just a guy who draws attention to himself.”

But why Boyles would have a guy like this on his radio show, unless his plan was to slam him, is beyond me.

There’s ratings, and it’s obvious Boyles chases them, and he got carried away again.

Boyles told me that he has nothing against Muslims, and he recommended a book called, The Mirage, which is a novel about Christian terrorists who fly planes into buildings in the Mid East.

I asked Jacob Hornberger, President of the libertarian Future of Freedom Foundation, who was part of a recent “Civil Liberties College Tour,” addressing civil liberties and terrorism, whether bigoted speech like Keller’s, in an advertisement, is protected under the Frist Amendment.

He emailed me that it’s protected, saying:

“The man has the fundamental, God given right to say all of these things and to run his concealed carry course any way he wants, no matter how offensive his speech or conduct is to others.”

Because the speech is contained in an advertisement, he wrote that “the entity he’s paying, as the owner of the publication or station, has the right not to publish the advertisement.”

Attorney and author Bruce Fein, who was also part of the Civil Liberties College Tour, had a different view, stating in an email to me:

“The speech is unprotected by the First Amendment. Civil rights laws may properly prohibit speech that encourages persons offering services to the public generally for commercial gain from invidious discrimination in violation of the law. See US Supreme Court decision in Pittsburgh Human Relations case authored by Justice Potter Stewart.”

I’m no lawyer, but from what I’ve read, Fein seems to have it right.

Either way, Boyles, who failed to address the free speech issues, clearly has a First Amendment right to air the ad on his radio show.

But basic decency says he should refrain from spreading senseless attacks on Muslims.

15 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Arvadonian says:

    encapsulates the problem:  “But basic decency….”, and therein lies the problem.  Boyles exhausted his limited supply of “basic decency” several years ago and has been operating on empty ever since.

  2. dwyer says:

    “But why Boyles would have a guy like this on his radio show, unless his plan was to slam him, is beyond me.”

    Are you crazy?  boyles used to call “talk radio” the “cesspool.”  Every day on his show, he demonstrates why. He has no one on his show accept people who stir the “pot” and invoke anger and fear in his audience, IMHO.

    Jason, me boy, I think you are still scared of boyles’ wrath.  boyles has Robert Spencer from Jihad Watch on all the time. boyles defends gays, but every thing else, that might be covered by decency or our Bill of Rights, he characterizes as “political correctness” and attacks it.

    boyles is probably in a death spiral on his ratings….Joanne Ostrow says that David Sirota has more listeners than he does and Steve Kelley on KNUS and conservatives on 560 am compete now with boyles with much better programming….so boyles promotes fringe crap.  Did you miss his relentless attack on Kyle for provoking the dog that bite her? Did you hear him announce that 30 to 40 million people are on welfare

    in the US and they should all be drug tested? (His figures include everyone on Social Security and

    Medicare). And boyles is back promoting the birthers.  

    Jason, Jason, Jason, get a grip.

    • Jason Salzman says:

      I just don’t think he’s all bad, and he’s smart. I don’t understand why a lot of smart people do bad things. I’m the kind of person who gives people, even righties, the benefit of the doubt, like they just lost it in a particular instance for some reason. Maybe I’m weak. Or maybe I need to get a grip, like you say.

      • BlueCat says:

        Promoting the possibility of rational discussion isn’t a bad thing.  Do you think you could get a thoughtful, civil response from Boyles? Unfortunately I doubt it but if you keep trying to create the possibility for such a thing such a thing, someone, probably not Boyles, might surprise us.  

        • Jason Salzman says:

          Boyles said he regretted agreeing with Keller. That’s not much but it’s something. It would have been interesting to hear what Boyles would have said if I asked him why he had keller on the show. But he kind of told the truth when he said the guy is just trying to get attention. So Boyles implies that he’s just doing the same thing..

      • dwyer says:

        You were selective with boyles, and then gave him a pass on what he said and how he handled this particular guest.

        boyles always defends gays.  It is the one thing that I admire about him.  But the rest of what he does, I don’t.

        But, like so many people, I don’t listen very much anymore.  I check out his topics and then move on. It gives me a clue what the limbaugh talking points are for the day.

        I like to listen to Bill Bennet in the am….because he is so smooth and so artful and helped deliver MA to Senator Brown back in 2010.  He is the real harbinger of what the right wing is going to do.  You are too young to remember, but boyles would….bill bennet is the “Arthur Godfrey” of talk radio….it was widely rumored that Godrey was the model for the talk show host in “Face in the Crowd.” (I hope to hell I got the title of the show right….it is all about “Dusty Rhodes.) Althought, as far as I know, Bennet doesn’t have any skeletons in the closet…it is more his “folksy” manner and the real political power he wields.

        I know you are trying to establish a media “beat.”  I wish you well.

        • DaftPunk says:

          His skeletons are out of the closet.

          If it were your sole purpose to reduce crime, Bennett said, “You could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down.

          The Washington Monthly and Newsweek have learned that over the last decade Bennett has made dozens of trips to casinos in Atlantic City and Las Vegas, where he is a “preferred customer” at several of them, and sources and documents provided to The Washington Monthly put his total losses at more than $8 million.


  3. nancycronk says:

    why do any of you listen to Boyles in the first place?

    • dwyer says:

      I am reverting to an infant’s sleeping patterns…two hours up and two hours down.  In the middle of the night and dawn, any voice is comparable to the dead silence of a black universe.

      I am listening to boyles, in particular, and caplis/silverman  less and less.  It used to be that these shows were one way of catching news…no more.  It is more like tabloid journalism.  

      But, they are a listening post….what the right wing is doing or plotting.

      Perhaps, I should just go back to drink.

    • BlueCat says:

      All I know about this is what Jason tells us. I used to force myself to listen for a few minutes here and there so I’d know what the righties were saying but I find I pretty much know without listening anyway. Pretty much the same goes for any remaining progressive talk radio, as far as that goes. One aggravates me, the other bores me but there’s always something interesting to listen to on NPR. Good, not to mention painless, to be filled in by Jason once in a while though.

  4. Diogenesdemar says:

    especially his having any kind of regrets, is playing the part of a willing fool.  He thrives on controversy, and contrived controversy is just dandy; it’s about his only hope of getting any attention anymore, since he’s much, much too lazy and craven to do any legitimate reporting, opinion or interviewing.

    I’m glad Jason is pointing out Boyles worthlessness, but let’s not make this into any kind of a big deal — that’s exactly what Sneaky Petey would want.

  5. cbjim says:

    He is the biggest turd on the radio. I quit listening to him years ago. I bet he is still talking about the Ramsey’s

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