So I said this week I wanted to blog on the topics of Paul Henry, Hajab, Dr Hook and Plus size models. However, what I didn't say was I was going to cover three of them all in one post. There is a good reason for that, I had no intention of doing so, but hey, what the heck. it's a challenge right? I was going to try and get Plus size models in as well, but I think that is a step too far. So as we all know Paul Henry has returned to the airwaves on Radio Live. Bringing his form of shock jock, lowest common denominator, oh I am so clever and it is only a bit of fun broadcasting to the radio audience once again. I use the term broadcasting and not journalism, because really it isn't journalism is it?
I was musing about this over the weekend and reflecting on the fact that Radio Live's lineup of hosts pretty much cements them as a radio station which caters to the lowest common denominator for most of the day. I say most of the day, as I do rate Marcus Lush and Karyn Hay and Andrew Fagan. Marcus is charming, intelligent and quirky. This also makes him my ideal date, other than the fact that he is a bloke. Karyn and Andrew remind me of the 80's and that is good enough for me any day of the week. Unfortunately, the core daytime stable of Michael Laws, Willie and J.T. and Paul Henry, stand testimony, in my opinion, that Radio Live seek to be the radio station of the ill educated, uninformed and plain stupid.
Paul's brand of broadcasting is designed to get ratings by catering to this lowest common denominator of society and there are plenty of willing listeners in this category. In reality, I don't suppose I can knock them for this really. Those people deserve radio as well and in truth, let's face it, in many ways talkback is designed for this type of people in the first place. So, I guess Paul Henry has found his rightful home, and I am sure he will be very comfortable there for the foreseeable future.
Topics that broadcasters like Mr Henry like to get their teeth into are subjects which divide societies and play on their fears and prejudices (but it is all just fun). The other Paul of controversial broadcasting (Mr Holmes), wrote an article in the last week, with a battle cry against Burqa, and more directly the Niqab which is the face covering worn by some Muslim women. He then went on to say that although we probably think the Hajab or the traditional women's head covering commonly associated with the Muslim religion was silly, we didn't mind that so much. I found this a vile piece of writing (you will note again I do not use the word journalism), which was based on ignorance, intolerance and the knowledge it would sell newspapers and keep him in the public eye. I object to Paul Holmes and people of his ilk presuming that they speak for me, and that his racist, banter is representative of New Zealanders. When TVNZ finally got his rubbish off television, I thought we might be free of it. However, apparently the NZ Herald still see fit to give him space to air his views.
Indeed, many of the views that Paul Henry and Paul Holmes espouse seem more at home in the 70's and early 80's, a time when bands like Dr Hook were in the charts. The only difference is, I like to remember Dr Hook. I would prefer not to be reminded of the small mindedness of less enlightened times, when a drunk was Prime Minister and his cronies sent New Zealand into massive overseas debt.
There, I did it, had a rant and got them all in!