quote:Alderman Accused of Calling Radio Station with Racist Message
Dec 9, 2005, 05:12 PM MST
By Kathryn Bracho and WBAY.com
A radio show caller who made what some say are racist comments has been exposed as embroiled Green Bay City Council member Earl Van Den Heuvel. WTAQ Radio commissioned a lab voice analysis to show that Van Den Heuvel used a false name to speak his mind.
WTAQ says the caller on November 2nd identified himself as Don, who called to discuss minorities living in the Green Bay area.
"Don" said he thought minorities were the cause of much of the area's crime. "They are committing the crimes and they are doing these things, and I'll tell you what, it's about time we start cracking down on these people."
"If he's got his pants hanging down to his knees, like most of these young black youth have, I'm gonna call the police. I have and I will."
He continued, "Being a racist may be a smart thing to protect your property in this city. Until the people start changing, until the people start doing the things they need to do to bring around their people, you're not stupid for being a racist, you're smart and you're looking out for your property."
The radio station had the call analyzed by a forensic audiologist, who determined it matched Van Den Heuvel's voice. Action 2 News tried but was unable to reach Van Den Heuvel for this story. He has acknowledged to other media organizations that he made the call.
Thursday morning, WTAQ's Jerry Bader, who had the audio analyzed, called for Van Den Heuvel to resign from the city council and the Brown County Board -- not just for his remarks but for the lie that followed.
Bader said the conversation went like this: "I said, 'Earl, did you call my show last night?' 'No, no I didn't call your show.' 'You didn't call my show pretending to be Don in Green Bay?' 'No. Why would I do that?'"
Bader told listeners, "I think he should resign and resign immediately. He's an embarrassment to the city."
The consensus of most callers was that Van Den Heuvel should step down, including a fellow council member. Tony Theisen said, "I'm a strong believer in taking responsibility for your actions. If I'm Earl, I would resign."
Another caller said, "He needs to hang his head in shame, clean out his desk, and get out of county and city government. I'm so ashamed of him."
"In society alone there is no reason for that type of behavior let alone being a representative of the community. It's despicable."
Few callers defended him.
"I think if he believes what he said, he should defend what he said and put it up to the people to be re-elected. You know, it's not like he perjured himself in front of a grand jury," said another caller.
"I think he should not resign, and I think we should let the people in his district decide if he should be in there or not, not all the other people from all over the city. Leave it up to the people of his district."
Van Den Heuvel made news just this week when he apologized for calling a person a profanity after that person emailed his concerns about Van Den Heuvel's position on the downtown boardwalk plan. Before he apologized, some alders had called for censuring him.