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Wis. Public Radio drops old-time radio shows over racist, sexist content

Wis. Public Radio drops old-time radio shows over racist, sexist content

Created: June 12, 2020 01:30 PM

Wisconsin Public Radio is dropping its longtime weekend broadcasts of old-time radio shows from the 1930s to the 1960s, citing an inability to find shows without offensive content.

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The dramas and comedies from what's often called the "Golden Age of Radio" have aired for decades on Saturday and Sunday evenings on WPR's Ideas Network, including KUWS (91.3 FM) in Superior and WUWS (90.9 FM) in Ashland. "Old Time Radio Drama" will air for the last time on June 14.

The shows originally aired on major commercial radio networks and are now in the public domain. WPR Director Mike Crane said many of the programs from that era contain racist and sexist content.

"Despite significant effort over the years, it has been nearly impossible to find historic programs without offensive and outdated content. And, ultimately, these programs don’t represent the values of WPR and The Ideas Network's focus on public service through news and information," Crane said in a news release.

Norman Gilliland, who hosts "Old Time Radio Drama," will continue at WPR as a host for Classical music programming, "Chapter A Day," and "University of the Air."

The Ideas Network will replace old time radio with PRX Remix, a magazine show featuring highlights from podcasts and documentaries. PRX Remix will air weekends at 8 p.m. beginning Saturday, June 20.

Copyright 2020 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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