Q: Where’s Jamie Allman? I used to see his television program on ABC 30 KDNL and listen to his radio program on 97.1 FM. I would appreciate your answer. — Renee, Belleville
A: Jamie Allman, longtime television reporter and radio personality in the St. Louis area and one-time spokesman for the St. Louis Archdiocese, resigned from his television program after advertisers began to pull their support following a Twitter controversy. He was fired from “Allman in the Morning” on 97.1 KFTK-FM St. Louis shortly thereafter.
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Or so some media reports say.
In a series of videos on his Facebook page, Allman says he did not “part ways” with 97.1 and signed no papers to make that official.
Allman asserts he did not threaten, vow to threaten or fantasize about threatening David Hogg on Twitter as some news outlets claimed.
The tweet Allman is referencing, which was interpreted by Missouri lawmaker Stacy Newman and major press outlets like the Washington Post and New York Times as “a threat,” was about sodomy, David Hogg, who is Parkland, Florida, shooting survivor, and a hot poker.
“I did not even use his twitter handle,” Allman says in his video, titled “The Truth about the Jamie Allman Tweet — How Journalism 101 Hit Zero,” which he posted on his Facebook page in April this year.
Allman’s description of the video reads: “In reporting on my infamous tweet the media truly took a hot poker to the truth. (Share this like they shared the tweet). My tweet was in the context of a larger conversation, was a facetious reference to right-wing plotters, and was a teasing precursor to next-day coverage of a documentary in which David F-bombed a bunch of people but even then I said he was baited into it. I defended him. No sensible person could see that tweet as a threat. But the news media accelerator went from zero to lies in no time.”
In the video, Allman says any media outlets that represented that he “threatened” Hogg had a “reckless disregard of the truth.”
Around the time Allman sent the controversial tweet, he had been discussing the survivors of the Parkland shootings, and their efforts at gun-control legislation, on his political commentary show, according to the Riverfront Times.
On “The Allman Report,” Allman reportedly said, “You can’t say, ‘Hey I’m just a kid. We have to be allowed to refute what you’re saying ... or to respond to it, you can’t be all the time grabbing your blanket when the going gets tough.”
Included in his Facebook video about the tweet, Allman shows a scene from the film “Reservoir Dogs” in which the actor Steve Buscemi, portraying Mr. Pink, recites a similar and vulgar line about the use of hot pokers.
Allman says, in the past, he has stood up for people who use “raw language,” even if he disagrees with the political opinion being voiced. He lists Maria Chappelle-Nadal, Kathy Griffin and Snoop Dogg as some of the “raw language” users he supported.
Chappelle-Nadal, a Missouri state senator, was removed from all committees and censured by her colleagues after a post on Facebook in which she hoped President Donald Trump “will be assassinated.”
Griffin lost many of her sponsors and her New Year’s Eve job with CNN after a photograph in which she held up what appeared to be the bloodied and disembodied head of someone who resembled Trump.
Snoop Dogg drew criticism for posting a photo of his album cover for “Make America Crip Again” on Instagram, which portrayed the rapper standing over a dead body wrapped in an American flag with the label “Trump” hanging from its toe. His album was released with a different cover.
Allman goes on to say the major media outlets misrepresented his tweet because they “wanted to control the truth.”
In a recent interview with the BND, Allman said, “Their goal was to basically get me off the air.” He described himself as “a common-sense conservative.”
“It isn’t Republican or Democrat radio,” Allman said. “It focuses on common-sense policies. That’s basically what I promote.”
“I was having a pretty big impact here,” Allman said. “My morning radio show was the top-rated talk show in town in the morning and my television show was competing with a lot of the other outlets.”
As for Hogg, the person at the center of the tweet controversy, Allman says the media outlets didn’t contact Hogg for comment. In his video, Allman displays the Florida-based Sun Sentinel newspaper headline: “David Hogg shrugs off St. Louis broadcaster’s vulgar tweet.”
At the time Allman was fired, the radio station 97.1 was being operated by Entercom Communications under a local marketing agreement with the owner, Emmis Communications. According to Inside Radio, at the end of April 2018, Allman filed a lawsuit against entities of both Entercom and Emmis.
The lawsuit claims, among other things, that Allman was wrongly and unnecessarily fired and the tweet did not represent an actual threat towards Hogg. Allman said his lawyer asked him not to discuss it further.
As for his current activities, Allman said, “After leaving 97.1, I have now my own network called Radio Free Allman. It is a morning show from 6 to 9 a.m., listenable through a downloadable app from Apple and Google, also on Facebook where I have my Jaime Allman, Radio Free Allman page.”
“I am currently involved in a lawsuit against my former company so, contractually, I can’t actually hop on another dial station yet,” Allman said. He does expect to return to both television and radio in time.
But even when he returns to the other outlets, Allman said, “The Radio Free Allman show will continue.”
If you go online to RadioFreeAllman.com, listeners can sign up for Allman’s email list, live-stream his program for free and purchase Radio Free Allman items to “support his mission.”
You can also download a court document detailing Allman’s lawsuit against Entercom and Emmis.
Allman suggested reading anything non-fiction or biography-related about President Calvin Coolidge. He described Coolidge as “the original small government guy, in modern times” and his favorite president.
Allman also recommended reading, “A Nation of Serfs: How the Greatest Generation Shackled Us with Debt” by Bryce Webster.