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ProLibertad WBAI Statement 3-12-01

ProLibertad WBAI Statement
Date: Mon, 12 Mar 2001
From: Benjamin Ramos

Please read the ProLibertad statement on the current Pacifica crisis:

We, Prolibertad, the Freedom Campaign to free the Puerto Rican political prisoners, represent the progressive Puerto Rican community who are and have been long time listeners and monetary supporters of WBAI. We are adding our voices to the struggle that demands that Pacifica be returned to its rightful and legal caretakers - board members who represent the community and who advocate for the communities* interests. Prolibertad supports those fighting against the injustices listed below, and we demand that Pacifica be maintained, as founded, a non-commercial, listener sponsored, corporate free, union organized, broadcasting outlet for the statement of alternative voices.

We believe the Board of Pacifica has been purposely stacked with members who promote the profit motivated concepts of a pro-capitalist mainstream media, i.e. commercial and corporate financed media. This stacking of the board has resulted in: censorship and interference with the political character and content of the programming; illegal actions; lack of accountability to their employees and audience; and a system of management that fires people by letter, late at night, and improperly fires union shop stewards and other personnel.

Our intention is to work with the progressive forces, including "The Pacifica Campaign", to ensure that those board members who are diametrically opposed to the concept of and presence of alternative models of media are removed. We intend to use our resourceful, viable and supportive community to that end and to help build a new Pacifica/WBAI.

In the past, WBAI has been an incredible resource for the activist community in the metropolitan New York area. No other radio station has given progressive organizations the opportunity to express their point of view. Yet it has been lacking in some areas, -in terms of coverage on Puerto Rico and issues stemming from the Puerto Rican struggle. Our hopes are that a new type of Pacifica/WBAI radio station will emerge, one where the community will have access to their radio station because their information is newsworthy, it is of the community, it is of interest to the communities of the metropolitan areas, it shows the connections between our communities and the global communities, and not solely because of personal connections with reporters and producers. We look forward to the future where we can establish a new relationship where the Puerto Rican community both in the U.S. and Puerto Rico can receive air time and coverage that it merits.

For more information on the ProLibertad Freedom Campaign please contact 718-601-4751 or email us at ProLibertad@hotmail.com . Make sure to visit our website www.ProLibertad.org and join our listserve PROLIBERTAD-subscribe@Topica.com

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