Right wing talk radio personality Dori Monson no longer has a platform from which to promote Tim Eyman’s destructive initiatives and other harmful agendas. At least not for the time being, anyway.
The Seattle Seahawks and Bonneville International, which owns KIRO FM) revealed today that they have suspended Monson indefinitely after he posted a transphobic tweet during Wednesday’s gubernatorial debate between Democratic incumbent Jay Inslee and Republican challenger Loren Culp.
The tweet has been deleted, but we have a copy of it. It said:
“Inslee: we follow science in WA. The state where I could go to Olympia tomorrow and change my birth cert to say I was a girl on 10/2/61 HAHAHAHAHA.”
– Dori Monson
As Cascadia Advocate readers are likely aware, this is hardly the first offensive and discriminatory thing that Dori has said.
Nonetheless, it prompted a fresh outcry on social media.
“If the Seahawks truly believe they are attempting to create a welcoming and inclusive football community in this region, they need to disassociate themselves with Dori Monson and his glib transphobia,” tweeted Mike All Sawyer the night of the debate.
“Hi Seahawks — as a season ticket holder and longtime fan, and also someone from a family that loves and supports trans people, please cut ties with this man. He’s generally pretty awful, but definitely transphobic as evidenced in this tweet,” wrote Jenna Rahm.
The Seahawks, not surprisingly, acted first, and Bonneville followed suit.
Monson did not host his show today.
When contacted by The Seattle Times for comment, Monson declined to say anything on the record. Smart move. As the old adage goes, when you’re in a hole, quit digging. Monson knows he’s in a hole — one of his own making — and is choosing to lay low rather than make things worse for himself.
Bonneville-owned KIRO FM also said that it would have no comment on the matter, citing its policy on personnel matters.
On social media, however, there were plenty of people offering comment.
“No one is going to miss Dori Monson/Dori Monson Show, Seahawks. Seattle has much better,” tweeted Vikkids.
“Dori Monson getting kicked to the curb is a nice way to celebrate Blue Friday,” SkiffFeldSpar agreed.
“He says outrageous thing on his radio show all the time. There’s free speech and then there’s decency. Dori Monson is a huge jerk. He shouldn’t be rewarded for saying outrageous things,” greenchile opined.
“Yeah, it’s politics. And when it comes to your employer, politics is a perfectly legitimate reason to no longer pay someone to work for you. Sorry Trumpies, free speech simply doesn’t apply here. He’s got the same speech rights he always had. He just doesn’t have that job,” Joe Puhlman pointed out. (Right wing groups and activists are all for “employer rights” except when it comes to an employer’s right to suspend or sack someone for spouting bigoted right wing views.)
I went on Dori’s show twice last year to respond to his attacks on multimodal transportation infrastructure and make the case against Tim Eyman’s I‑976 to his listeners. I did so from KIRO’s studio on both occasions rather than by phone. I found Dori’s off-air demeanor to be rather different from his on-air one. When not speaking into a microphone, he doesn’t speak as loudly or irritatingly, for example. I found him capable of carrying on a normal, cordial conversation with no other audience except for me and his producer.
It’s Dori’s on-air, on social media persona that is the problem. I believe Dori speaks and acts the way he does to cultivate his right wing following. It’s not clear to me that he truly holds all of the beliefs that he espouses to hold through his now suspended program.
Our region simply doesn’t need uninformed, bigoted, right wing commentary on our airwaves. It would be wonderful to see Dori’s tired, harmful show get canceled permanently and be replaced by programming that’s actually informative and educational.