12-7-18 — The following is an excerpt from Dana Walker’s excellent FB page discussing Olympia’s Media Island meltdown:
Andras Jones: Thanks for asking Ken [Burch]. We’ll start with KAOS. I hosted Radio8Ball there for 10 years. During that time my co-host Tammy T regularly engaged in behavior that made me uncomfortable including lots of dramatic late night e-mails from her and very public attacks from her partner Merwyn Haskett.
I spoke with program director Donna Crg DiBianco about my uncomfortable feelings with Tammy and she encouraged me to give her another chance. After several more chances I finally made the decision to do the show without her. She had her own show on KAOS so she did not lose access to the station but her response was to target me for harassment that included tearing down my flyers, sending (and getting other people to send) threatening e-mails to me, calls to my other places of business encouraging them not to work with me, slanderous graffiti using my name at public places like The Brotherhood Lounge
She also composed a very public blog that KAOS knew about in which she made many claims about me that were untrue and painted her as the innocent victim of an evil man who took away her show.
When I complained to the new station manager Ruth Brownstein about this she said we needed to work it out and that it wasn’t a KAOS issue. Ruth then started to file negative reports about me. One night not long after reporting the harassment program director Jerry Drummond accosted me before I went on air in front of a witness. He shouted obscenities at me and repeated claims that Tammy had been posting on her blog about the show going down the tubes since she left.
I filed a report about this and two weeks later my show was canceled and the next day Jerry Drummond filed an untrue report with campus police that I had assaulted him.
Since then Ruth Brownstein, John Ford and others on the KAOS staff have spread rumors and lies about me. Ask Brett Clubbe if you want to know how they work. I should say one more thing. Tammy T admitted to her harassment of me in a letter which I re-printed in my book “Accidental Initiations” but no one at KAOS or Evergreen has been willing to demand that I receive some kind of hearing about being harassed, reporting it, and then being punished for doing so. Meanwhile, Radio8Ball has gone onto great success and KAOS gets to take no part in it, which is very sad for the community of people who loved the show and have no idea what KAOS did to get rid of it.
As for the co-op, there’s nothing wrong with passing a boycott of Israeli goods if you do so in a way that invites and includes community discussion, but when you abuse the process to ram it through in one night without inviting the community or the staff to have a say then you’re playing dirty. And when you play dirty in a way that excludes Jews from a conversation about Israel it is as anti-semitic as it would be to exclude women from a discussion about reproductive rights, or people of color from a conversation about police brutality, or to exclude Muslim people from a conversation about Israel.
If you have to cheat to win then you are not in the right and you make that space unsafe for everyone. I should also point out that the boycott led to removing one item from the shelves so it had zero impact in Israel but a huge impact in Olympia. The Olympia Food Co–op that began in my uncle’s garage in the 70’s is someplace I do not feel safe or welcome and I actually oppose Israel’s military policies, but I also oppose anti-semitic bullies in Olympia and anyone who justifies the Co-op’s actions to exclude community involvement, especially the Jewish community, in that decision is a supporter of anti-semitism no matter how they may try dress it up.
As for what went on at MII, I have no clue and I do not take anyone’s side. I am speaking generally about intersectionality and inclusivity and using my own experience of being targeted by reactionary bullies as an example.
I don’t know who the reactionary bullies are in this situation. It sounds to me like everyone is really triggered and I don’t think triggered people generally make the best decisions, which is why processes that allow people to be heard and to listen are what I think we need, not just at MII.
And finally, just so we’re clear, when you gather a gang of people together to harass a Jewish person it’s going to be terrifying to them in a specific way which is unique to the Jewish experience. If you then punish the terrified Jewish person for reporting the harassment this too is going to have a unique effect on a person who comes from a culture that has experienced anti-semitism and unfair treatment at the hands of authorities who are supposed to protect them.
And if you then manipulate processes designed to protect people to further target, isolate and slander that Jew then you are fully engaging the anti-semitic playbook.
And finally, if the largest community organization in town uses the same dirty tactics to manipulate their own processes to exclude Jews from a conversation about Israel, well, then one might rightly say, as i do, that Olympia is an anti-semitic little town and the only way to prove me wrong is to be willing to have the anti-semitism conversation, which would include addressing the cases I related above with an awareness that anti-semitism is real and the people who want to talk about it aren’t just being dramatic, paranoid, or trying to play a card. We are people with a specific history that includes being murdered while our “allies” on the left watched and did nothing.
As you can see I have a lot of energy for this conversation and despite those who suggest, as many have, that I just walk away, that is something I will never do. You’re welcome.