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Open letter to Hot 97 FM

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Tue, Jun 29, 2010

Editor: There are expletives and offensive expressions not normally used in the local environment; however there are within St. Vincent and the Grenadines, persons who have been socialized outside. Not only are there Jamaicans domiciled in SVG, but there are many Vincentians who have spent years in Jamaica for one reason or another.{{more}}

Here, as in the other Caribbean islands, there is an issue pertaining to the negative lyrics heard in some popular music from Jamaica and the possible effect on the youth. I should point out here that songs which are not fit for air play are not heard on the radio in Jamaica. Songs with lewd lyrics, including offensive terms/expressions are either banned from airplay, or will only be heard if the offensive sections are deleted.

I had the misfortune of being aware of an advertisement carried on HOT 97 FM on the morning of Wednesday, June 9. Having paid very little attention, I can hardly recall the details; suffice to say some sort of party/fete activity was being advertised. However, the Jamaican expletive was very clear to me. I was offended and motivated to write, as I believe someone in ignorance permitted the mindless use of the offensive expression.

I hereby suggest that before using words/terms/ expressions which are “foreign” to the local environment, one should check the meaning and/or context before use in the public domain.

There have been poor and distasteful ads aired, but this is the first time I have heard curse words used. Is this a portent of what is to come?

Valerie J Cato

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