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Urban Radio Announcer Comes Out

cropped-cropped-ubrodriguezpress2013headshot2Last week we printed a story about a transphobic slur made by WGCI announcer UB Rodriquez about Transgender actor and Emmy nominee Laverne Cox. As I do not tolerate ANY form of industry intolerance against LBGT people, women or any kind of racism I surmised from the story that UB was being homophobic and transphobic with his slur. I was completely unaware that Rodriquez had come out a year earlier as a gay man. This would make him the very first urban radio announcer to come out in the history of urban radio. (Correct me if I am wrong). I know MANY gay and lesbian PDs, DJs, record label people, publishers artists in R&B, hip-hop music and gospel etc who are gay, lesbian and bi but none of them are out to the industry because of feared discrimination. I am repulsed by this because I completely understand but I will not allow my platform to be afraid to support these groups especially since I myself have been the victim of all kinds of discrimination and bias in my career. I have never been in the closet as much as I wanted to put food on the table for me and my son and to do what I loved so I had to tolerate quite a bit of negative sh from urban radio people in my 30 year career (and my life) and I won’t spend another day being who other people think I should be. I have 30 years as a radio and industry pro that can’t be denied and I’m good with that.  I applaud UB and hope that other urban radio and industry people feel the freedom to finally come forward and be who they really are because I’ve seen industry people DIE from the pain of hiding… some of which you know.I have reached out to UB to discuss the term “Tranny” and there was obviously a misunderstanding. In addition, at the bottom of Rodriquez’s twitter post is a more precise statement which I did not see the first time (see below). I applaud people like Laverne Cox and I apologize for any problems this may have caused WGCI or Rodriquez. I have a very good relationship with the Radio Station and many staff members over the years and it’s one of the Radio Stations I respect most in the industry.   My best…ub


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