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Racist comments spark effort by Missouri lawmaker to get radio station's license yanked

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Senator Jamilah Nasheed, D-St. Louis calls for Greitens' resignation

"We should be outraged," said Senator Jamilah Nasheed, D-St. Louis, who speaks on the Senate floor calling for Gov. Eric Greitens' resignation onThursday, Jan. 11, 2018. Gov. Greitens has been accused of blackmailing a woman he admitted to having an extra-marital affair with. Photo by Laurie Skrivan,

JEFFERSON CITY • A St. Louis state senator wants the Federal Communications Commission to pull the broadcasting license for 1190 KQQZ-AM after a host's racist and homophobic comments bubbled to the surface again over the weekend.

In a letter to Ajit Pai, the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Sen. Jamilah Nasheed, D-St. Louis, said on Monday the Fairview Heights-based radio station and one of its hosts, Bob Romanik, had violated federal law which forbids obscene, indecent or profane language on the air.

The FCC is reviewing the letter and didn't have any further comment, a spokesman said.

Romanik, who hosts "Kool Killer Kountry," has used the n-word and various misogynistic and homophobic slurs over the years. His show faced another round of scrutiny when, over the weekend, someone posted apparently edited audio of state Rep. Bob Burns, D-St. Louis County, calling into the show.

Burns said his calls related to supporting troops and veterans, and that he did not condone Romanik's offensive commentary or participate in it. Burns has resisted calls to resign since the tapes came to light.

“Those who know me and work with me know that I am respectful in my speech and respectful to others,” Burns said on Monday. “This is a case of some things I said on different topics that were taken out of context and mixed together by others to purposefully mislead the public.”

Nasheed said the station should have its license revoked and that the FCC should assess "a significant fine against Romanik."

"Our nation has witnessed a horrific increase in white nationalist activity, due in part to the normalization and toleration of hate-speech," Nasheed wrote to the FCC. "Too often, racist views are turned into violent action through the encouragement of racist personalities like Mr. Romanik and radio stations like 1190 KQQZ-AM."

The FCC did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Bill Thomas, assistant general manager of the radio station, offered no apologies when contacted by the Post-Dispatch.

"As soon as they take the n-word off all the black radio stations throughout this country — on all the rap stations, on all the comedic routines that the blacks use the n-word — then we'll quit using it," he said.


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