NEW YORK – One month after CBS Radio fired radio host Don Imus, it has permanently pulled the plug on a pair of suspended New York shock jocks for a prank phone call rife with offensive Asian stereotypes.
The cancellation of the show on WFNY-FM, nearly three weeks after the hosts were suspended, was another indication of the increased scrutiny on radio hosts and the heightened management sensitivity to complaints in the wake of the Imus firing.
CBS Radio dismissed Imus in April for his racist and sexist remarks about the Rutgers women's basketball team.
Vandergrift and Lay broadcast a call to a Chinese restaurant in which the caller, in an exaggerated accent, placed an order for "shrimp flied lice," claimed he was a student of kung fu, and compared menu items to employees' body parts.
The initial airing of the call went unnoticed, but a rebroadcast after Imus's firing prompted an outcry from Asian-American groups. Vandergrift and Lay were initially suspended without pay, but Asian-Americans quickly demanded the same penalty applied to the much higher-profile Imus.
"This is a victory not only for the Asian-American community, but for all communities who find themselves constant targets of racist and sexist programming," said Jeanette Wang, an executive with the Organization of Chinese Americans.
Mateo would not comment on the status of the DJs' contracts or whether they were still on the CBS payroll.
Imus plans a $120 million breach of contract suit against CBS Radio.