Not So Special Delivery

By Jazelle HuntCapstone News Network

WOL-AM Radio personality Joe Madison spent Sunday morning outside the Washington Post watching his listeners and others take part in “Throw It Back Sunday” by putting their newspapers on the publication’s doorstep.

The demonstration was in response to an email Post music critic Tim Page wrote in response to an unsolicited press release from the office of Ward 8 Councilmember and former mayor Marion Barry’s office.

“Must we hear about it every time this crack addict attempts to rehabilitate himself with some new — and typically half-witted — political grandstanding? I’d be grateful if you would take me off your mailing list. I cannot think of anything the useless Marion Barry could do that would interest me in the slightest, up to and including, overdose.” Page wrote to a Barry aide.

Page and Post Executive Editor Leonard Downie, Jr. apologized to Barry.

Barry said Page should be fired. “For him to denounce our black elected official in such a contemptuous manner is unacceptable,” said Madison, also known to his listeners as the Black Eagle. “I asked my listeners to take a stand. This ‘culture of contempt’ permeating our society, especially toward black people, has got to stop. And this is just one incident, but it’s bigger than Page.”

Twenty-one years ago, media mogul Cathy Hughes led a 13-week Throw It Back Sunday campaign after the Post’s Sunday magazine published what many regarded as offensive portrayals of African Americans. Madison, who was in Detroit at the time, heard about her efforts, and last week, believed the tactic might work again.