Stopping The Rant By Denying The Right: North Carolina School Shuts Down Radio Program After Complaint From State Representative

MichaelStoneNCState Rep. Mike C. Stone (R-NC), left, is being accused this week of pressuring the closure of a weekly radio program at the Central Carolina Community College called “The Rant.” Stone appears remarkably sensitive as a politician to criticism and contacted the school about the program and its funding. CCCC President T.E. “Bud” Marchant reportedly responded to the pressure by tossing out any notions of journalistic and academic independence, though he denies the program was shutdown over “content.”

Stone complained to the college’s president after Stone was criticized for a proposals viewed as injecting more partisanship to the political process. It really does not matter such the subject is. The key was Stone’s response. Stone’s legislative assistant sent CCCC President T.E. “Bud” Marchant an email asking if the program is affiliated with the college and later demanded to know:

What is their programming schedule and format? Each day, each time slot. What show filled the FCC requirement when they stopped doing The Rant. Or did they stop? Has the show been in production since 2008? What is the radio station’s budget? What is the source of its funding?

Most reputable academic leaders would respond to such a request with a terse reference to the tradition of free speech at academic institutions. Instead, two days later, the CCCC issued an announcement that Marchant had suspended the program.

Stone lists his education as “Attended, Accounting, Central Carolina Business” and lists his experience as “Business Owner, O’Connell’s Grocery Store.” He appears to have picked up a taste for power judging from his successful effort to shutdown this program.

2008-07-10-127253128As for Marchant, 54, he is the former vice president for Educational Affairs at Piedmont Technical College, Greenwood, S.C. and holds a bachelor’s degree in History/Education from the University of South Carolina and a master’s degree in Administration from Winthrop College. He also holds his Educational Specialist degree from The Citadel and a doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Sarasota.

It would be useful if Marchant would explain to the rest of the academic community why he shutdown the program within days of receiving an email from a state legislator if it were not based on “content” because many would see the alternatives as cowardice or avarice.

Source: Think Progress

22 thoughts on “Stopping The Rant By Denying The Right: North Carolina School Shuts Down Radio Program After Complaint From State Representative”

  1. Blind

    That is outrageous on so many levels. It even goes against traditional Republican values such as Freedom from Government Control and such, but it is truly in line with politicians these days.

    This is really evidence of government by the politicians, for the politicians. Take, Take, Take, Take is their procedure.

    And the voter disenfranchisement with college students. You are right on about the control issue there. In the US, at least as a whole, those presently in college are are largely Democrats by how they vote, so it only seems this is to cause them to not have a large voting block of a particular party. It makes no sense from a legal point. The students’ legal residences can be where they live. Last I checked students 18 and older were not subject to any voting rules simply because they were in college.

    Also on the airport and water district issues, I don’t see what is wrong with local ownership of utilities. It provides a level playing field for businesses and in fact often the residential services is offered for less cost to the consumer because the business services make up for it. It is provided for less cost to businesses than private utilities and this is attractive to new businesses. I come from a public power part of the state and it worked out well for everyone. I moved to a privatized part and the cost is five times more expensive.

    Plus, the locally owned utilities and the airport can bring in revenue for the city that can offset some of the taxation needs

    To take this away. Corruption. plain and simple.

    I personally don’t have a problem (in principle) with cities or counties owning some profit earning businesses, so long as they don’t drive out completely private businesses in general, in order to pay for city/county services to make the city/county self sufficient and not rely on tax revenue. I am not sure how well this would work economically but it is worthwhile to look into. But then again, it might be an avenue for graft and undue influence when the politicians can then legislate away competition to the city’s services. Maybe it should just stick to utilitites and core services.

  2. Darren

    The state, in a move led by one of our very own newly elected GOP reps.(voted in after our city was cut into two districts through gerrymandering), has already taken control of our airport.

    In our last election cycle the city put the issue involving our water system on the ballot as a nonbinding resolution(our only course of action due to the state constitution), in which the citizenry voted overwhelmingly in favor of keeping control of our services. The city council has been extremely vocal in the fight to keep our water, voting unanimously twice to fight the takeover in different ways and some personally lobbying the general assembly in Raleigh.

    The take over of our resources and services proposes to take one of our municipalities biggest assets, currently overseen by a locally elected board, and place in under the control of a state-appointed panel. Makes absolutely no sense, with the one exception being that the GOP majority is trying to capitalize on its first majority in over a hundred years by seizing and consolidating local control for themselves.

    Voting rights is another major issue that the people aren’t asking for but the GOP is pushing anyway. Bills expected to pass include, but not limited to, not letting college students vote in their school’s district, voter ID, no more Sunday early voting, and limiting early voting sites(early voting tends to favor Dems, independents here).

    The city being dissolved comes from the fact that state constitution provides a means for the general assembly to revoke a city’s charter. Its right in there with the provision in the NC state constitution which reads: Article 6 Section 8
    “Disqualifications of office. The following persons shall be disqualified for office: First, any person who shall deny the being of Almighty God.”

    Its dark days in NC right now, imo.

  3. Blind Faithiness:

    That is very bad. I hope you all in Asheville fight on to keep what is yours. I hope your mayor there has the courage to call their bluff with disolving the city.

  4. I wonder if the people who worked or volunteered at and for the station will sue for interference in their right to freedom of/speech

  5. What has this country become?
    There is no danger of turning into something other than the good ol USA, because its already changed. This country is a joke now.

  6. Sadly, since the GOP has taken over the state legislature, this type of heavy-handedness is becoming the new normal here in NC.

    My city, Asheville, is in a bitter fight to keep control of its water resources(bought and paid for by us). The statehouse and general assembly have passed measures to have our property transferred to other authorities without reason or consent. They’ve even threatened to have our city ‘dissolved’ under a never-used-state statute.

    We’re seen as a bastion of liberalism in the eyes of the new GOP overlords.

  7. How about a story on Modern day Slavery. AKA Connecticut Justice…


  8. Didn’t Nazi Germany control content of radio, paper and personal interaction of its citizens….

  9. No profiles in courage here. Too many kids pretending to be men, and not enough manliness.

  10. It appears that Mr. Marchant is more concerned with career prospects than with either integrity or his job responsibilities.

  11. This typifies the way that all too many “educated people” chicken out when confronted with Luddites.

    It reminds me of JT on Hardball last night using “Pavlovian” in a description of all too many reactions in our nation at this time.

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