Now there are good radio DJs out there; don't get me wrong. I like some of them. But there are also awful ones, and I've never yet encountered a "drive time" program I like. They all seem to aim for the lowest fratty denominator. WBMX FM's "Lander in the Morning" show is apparently one of the classier ones. Its hallmark? The tastefully named "Nutcracker", in which the host prank-calls some random victim. How delightful.
It seems to have been getting worse lately. There have been programs that "joked" about the best techniques for binding a kidnapped child and that encouraged listeners to have sex in public places such as cathedrals. Or, more recently, there have been programs that held stupid contests with blatant disregard for their fatal consequences:
As a listener who identified herself as "Eve" told the morning crew, people "can get sick and possibly die from water intoxication."
"We're aware of that," one jock replied. And another jumped in to wisecrack that everyone in the contest had signed releases, "so we're not responsible."
Funny, apparently the Sacramento sheriff's department doesn't agree, given the number of warnings the DJs were recorded blowing off and given the resulting death of one of the contestants.
Free speech, even in blatant violation of taste, class, common sense, and criminal incitement ramifications, is one thing. Criminal negligence is entirely another.