So after 18 years of starting day with the Mark Davis Show on WBAP 820, the new owners, Cumulus, have decided to be humorous. The only problem, there is nothing humorous in what they are doing and judging by the many comments on Marks Blog, the many comments on Face book and the 100’s of Conservative friends I have, neither do a vast majority of people. While I am by no means privy to the details of Mark’s sudden departure from WBAP other than they are at “an impasse,” I can’t help but think in some part, this may not be political. The main stream media, for whom Cumulus is certainly apart, has tried pushing a leftist agenda for many years now The left themselves have tried to push the fairness doctrine on Conservative talk radio to no success and so I can only be left to assume, that in part, this may be an attempt at silencing Conservative Talk Shows and if it is, I wonder, is this how talk radio will find its demise? Will they simply buy up the stations and find an “contract impasse” with all the popular and successful talk show host like Mr. Davis whose voice is heard far and wide and loved by so many in an attempt to silence the Right?
In thinking back over the last 18 years, I can remember the 1st day Mark came to the Metroplex. In a shameful exercise of truth, I have to admit, I was leaning liberal at the time. I had recently separated from the U.S. Army (1982-1988) and was attending UTA. In that, I had started to be indoctrinated by the left and questioning many things as is apt to happen in our institutions of higher learning. Didn’t matter that in 1980, I was a solid Reagan supporter, even though I was only 17 years old or that in 1984 I voted for President Reagan and in 1988 for President Bush, by 1994, I was in the throes of student life and confused on many things that my father had raised me to believe. Unbeknownst to Mark, for his part, he started to shine a light on those confusing thoughts I was having. By 1995 I was in a relationship with my now wife, settling into a job and by 1997 I we were married and soon to be starting a family. Life was good. Great job, good money, living the dream! All the while I tuned in to listen to Mark every single morning. The more I listened, the more it made sense. Conservatism was indeed who I was and there was no question about it any longer. I will never forget my very 1st call to Mark. The subject had something to do with Marilyn Manson and his show which inspired me to call in and ask Mark if he felt that we were feeling the way we felt about Manson, the same way our parents felt about Alice Cooper in our day (Mark and I both being youngsters and products of the 70’s). I ended that call with a remark that I will never forget. It had Mark rolling on the floor and that was, “Mark, I used to smoke so much refer that the zigzag man had a tattoo of me on his arm. In a another call, I think about 2007, Michael Vick was the subject of conversation, and shamefully, having been in those dog fighting circles while I was stationed at Fort Bragg from 1982 until 1988, I felt that I could contribute to the conversation - to my surprise, I did. I called and told the call screener use to fight dogs and within a few minutes Mark had me on and for something a little longer than the normal call. Here in recent months, I have called Mark a few times to update him on the campaigns I became involved in.
Yes, over all those years, Mark Davis, not only inspired me to do right by my actions, he also inspired me to get involved and involved I became. I not only started campaigning for, but also became a Grassroots leader in our great state for the Cain Campaign. Just prior to Mr. Cain suspending, mark asked me whom I thought Cain supporters would flock to, my answer newt. I was right, most did. However I did not. I had an opportunity because of my position to be in on several calls that included Rep. Bachmann, Gov. Perry and Sen. Santorum, Santorum being the final call. I knew immediately, this is my guy. I launched an email to the Santorum Campaign and within about 30 minutes, the National Field Director, Shelley Ahlersmeyer was calling me and I was the 2nd State Grassroots Leader here in Texas working with my new buddy – Alice Linahan. This was in early December when the polls were around 5% and Mark had not yet actually indicated his strong support for Rick. Non the less, this was a decision I am so proud of, and I can honestly look to Mark and say thank you for motivating me. In fact, the very last call I had with Mark, I remarked that in Plano I stood right behind him at the Santorum event, but was afraid to say anything to him because he was with his lovely wife and son Ethan and very busy doing emcee duties for Rick. Mark, in his usual, light hearted but sincere manner said, “in the future, elbow someone if you must!” I wished now I had elbowed Mark. You see, Mark inspires, Mark motivates, Mark brings the very best out in people to stand up for what they believe in and that is something that precious few Conservative talk show host are able to do. Heck, at the risk of sounding completely like I have a “bromance” with Mark, I can even say that I have become so involved in the Conservative/Tea Party movement that I pay a nice little chunk of money every month to do an internet radio show for Sen. Santorum as well as sponsor 4 other shows ranging from Students for Santorum – to Conservative Women to an Anti Obama show and currently looking to sponsor a show catering to Latino voters on Blog Talk Radio. WHY? Because America is very important to me and because Mark, in all these years inspired me.
As Mark is oft to say, the relationship between host and listener is special, it builds a bond that is something akin to family and indeed, Mark is very much right on that. In the end, with the last weeks absence of Mark and feeling completely lost every morning, all I am left to say is: Cumulus is forcing me to divorce Mark Davis and I am mad as hell about it. So – Mr. Davis, if I should be lucky enough that you should ever read this, I want to thank you for 18 years of keeping me squared and level. I hope that where ever you land (if it is not back here in the Metroplex), that it is somewhere in which I can stream you in my “Tune in Ap” and continue to fill my mornings until lunch with the great show you have consistently delivered to me for the last 18 years. To all of you that feel basically the same way – I would urge you to go to TXAction.com and sign the “Bring Mark Back” petition that Raz Schaffer has started and let WBAP and Cumulus know your feelings by picking up the phone and making a call. Mark has stood by our side for 18 years as a strong Conservative voice; it is time to stand up for Mark.
Here's what I need you to do:
- Call local station manager Dan Bannett at 817-695-1820 or Cumulus Chief Operating Officer John Dickey at 404-949-0700 and let them know you want to hear Mark back on the radio.
- Get 5 or 10 (or more!) of your friends to join you in signing the petition. You know plenty of other WBAP listeners who want to hear Mark back on the radio. Get them on board!
- Share the petition on Twitter!
- Share the "Bring Back Mark" picture and petition on Facebook!
God Bless you and your family Mark (“luv ya man”), all you who read this and most especially, God Bless America.
Michael B. Smith
Host "Santorum's Soldiers of Patriotism"
Sunday 3-6PM CST
Guest Call IN 718-605-7176
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