(Editorial Comment from host RJ Evans on his American Heathen® radio show – Air Date 02/25/11)
The other day I was reading a comment, in another internet radio show chat room, about a show I produce on ShockNet Radio. It was a simple, mindless, ignorant quip. Nothing of substance, nothing that gave any indication as to why the person felt the way they did about the show. Their comment called the ShockNet show, ” A waste of electrons”. At first, I thought this comment was leveled at the show itself. But, then I realized it wasn’t directed the show, it was directed at me. I produce the shows on ShockNet Radio. All but one. And, ultimately, I’m responsible for the content and tone of every show. So, every comment made about any of the shows I produce is a comment directed at me in the end.
In 2005 I started ShockNet Radio as a vehicle for my anger and hostility toward religion. In particular, christianity, which had misled me to believe in mythological bullshit. I had recently de-converted from the garbage of religious belief. So, I had a lot of bones to pick. It was this anger and frustration that prompted me to dive headlong into the world of internet broadcasting. While this form of broadcasting was new to me, broadcasting has been a part of my life since I was a child. My father was a broadcaster, and I had decided to follow in my father’s footsteps at the tender age of fourteen. Throughout my life, I ventured in and out of radio, balancing it precariously with my other professional passion, being a musician. Never able to secure a really solid career in radio, I wandered from station to station, as many broadcasters do, doing anything I could in the business to further my passion. But I was never quite able to “get there” so to speak. Wherever “there” was, I never reached it. Whatever the circumstances that led me down the path to not getting “there”, ultimately it was I who bore the responsibility for the failure to get “there”. Or have I already arrived at “there”?
Anyway… I don’t know if I’ve ever really known what “there” is. Wherever “there” is, I really have no clue. I guess that’s true for most everyone at some point. You really don’t know what and where “there” is, but for some reason you keep trying to get “there”. Even today, I’m not sure about any of it. Although, I think I have a pretty good idea that “there” is where I am now. Because, it is the right now that matters the most to me. And, if the here and now is “there”… well, I guess I’m in pretty good shape. So, what is “there” right now? For me, it’s the satisfaction of knowing that the folks who host the shows on this station are doing what they want and how they want to do it. I’m not telling them how to do their shows. And, I’m certainly not going to restrain them in what they say. So, if that’s a “waste of electrons” then it’s a damn good waste! And, that probably means that I’m “there”!
Critics abound in this new information age. The internet has given a voice to anyone who wants to speak their mind. That is good. But, with this free and open community come the voices of total discontent. The noise generated by these parasites occasionally drowns out those who actually offer substance. Personal agendas hide in the shadows, only to be revealed in the most outrageous of word play. You know, the squeakier the wheel, the more outrageous the commentary, the larger the audience. They just want attention. But, what about content? What about substance? Where’s the content? Where’s the substance? Can anyone of these self-important critics formulate a sentence that actually means something? And, if so, can they even offer a workable solution to their problem? For all the bloviating that takes place on the electronic pages of purview, the critics seem to focus more on their own shallow words and provide nothing of substance to back them up. And, herein lay the reason for my editorial tonight.
The particular ShockNet show that was commented on is – from my point of view and many others - a very informative, substantive show. It features hosts and guests who possess a long list of reputable credentials and a wealth of knowledge. In fact, even a large number of listeners hold credentials and knowledge far superior to those of the egg-head that claimed the show is “ A waste of electrons”. One has to ask, ‘What is this critics motive?’
I have an idea of what it might be. But, I will state for the record that I have no evidence to back this up. However, I will beg the question and offer a possible reason for this idiot’s negative comment about the show. Why? Because I’m the one who produces it, and it is for me to answer based on my knowledge of who does and does not listen to ShockNet shows.
So, what are some possible reasons for listeners discontent? For one, ShockNet Radio has no rules. That means that anyone on this station says what they want to say, however they want to say it. Language, regardless of the flavor, is not restricted. Freedom of expression is held up as a virtue. And honesty is not only expected, but is held in the highest regard. Expletives, words that might offend a listener, are not censored here. But, what else might get someones ass in a snit? Well, how about the fact that I’m openly Atheist. My godless world view is an easy motive for negative comments about ShockNet shows.
ShockNet shows, and in particular, American Heathen, will always come under the blanket of wild-fire from the guns of the ignorant and uninformed. When I’m hated, the station is hated, the programs are hated. When freedom of expression is hated, the station is hated, the programs are hated. When expletives are hated, the station is hated, the programs are hated. It’s as simple as that. Now, if someone has a problem with the programming on ShockNet, all they have to do is fill out the feedback form found through a link on the front page of ShockNet Radio’s web site. Or, they can simply email me or any of the show hosts with their concerns. But, you know what? No one ever does. And, you know why? Because they KNOW they don’t have a fucking leg to stand on. There’s no substance to their bitching, moaning or complaining. Why? Because if they actually tried to form a substantive argument based on their perceived offense, their hypocrisy of bullshit would reveal their lie.
If someone has an issue with this show, or any other show on ShockNet Radio… do me a favor. Either put up or shut up. Either tune in or tune out. The choice is yours. If you have a legitimate problem with this show or with any other show on ShockNet Radio, then by all means, bring it to my attention. The buck stops here, with me. I’m responsible for what happens on this station. But, until you contact me or someone at this station, the only waste of electrons are the ones you use to fill the internet with your bullshit.