the blog of DC Drinking Liberally

August 23, 2005

“Truth Tour” Alum Gets Axe


A month after his July 25 suspension, WMAL has fired Michael Graham. Graham was suspended initially for saying repeatedly that “Islam is a terrorist organization.”

Up to yesterday WMAL believed that Graham would be returning to work: (Washington Post)

The station had conditioned his return to the midmorning shift on reading a station-approved statement in which Graham would have said that his anti-Muslim statements were “too broad” and that he sometimes uses “hyperbole” in the course of his program. WMAL also asked Graham to speak to the station’s advertisers and its employees about the controversy.

But Graham refused both conditions, prompting the station to drop him.

Curiously, the July 25 incident occurred a week after Graham’s participation in a “Truth Tour” of Iraq, where he would presumably have come into contact with many ordinary Iraqi Muslims, who emphatically are not terrorists.

As Justice Brandeis put it, the limit of free speech is when you “falsely shout fire in a crowded theater.” Graham clearly crossed that line.


  1. Hmm, “repeatedly” is right:

    According to WMAL, Graham said “Islam is a terrorist organization” 23 times on his July 25 program.

    Unfortunately he’s probably already been picked up by some other right-wing hate station, and I fear that whoever WMAL brings in to replace him will be cut from the same cloth.

    Keith11:25 am

  2. My speculation is along similar lines. Maybe he was trying to get fired?

    You may recall that WMAL didn’t want to take any action initially, but was pressured into it, so it’s unlikely that they’ll replace Graham with Jeanine Garafolo.

    —AltHippo • 12:48 pm

  3. DCRTV (which doesn’t do permalinks) says that WMAL executive Randall Bloomquist may be on his way out as well. He’s the one whose first reaction to Graham’s comments was to say this:

    Remember that this is talk radio. We don’t do the dainty minuet of the newspaper editorial page. It’s not ‘Washington Week in Review.’ It depends on pungent statements to drive it. Michael is rattling the cage. It’s designed to start and further a conversation, and it has certainly done that.

    Keith7:18 pm

  4. Republican Excuses

    Is it just me, or are the excuses Republicans are making getting stupider? Let’s look at what’s happened just this week.
    Monday WMAL radio talk show host Michael Graham was fired after refusing to apologize for “Islam is a terrorist org…

    DCDL11:43 am, August 25

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