KFI Radio Hosts John & Ken Suspended After Whitney Houston Remarks

    February 17, 2012
    Drew Bowling
    Comments are off for this post.

The United States Constitution might guarantee freedom of speech, but it doesn’t protect people from the repercussions that result from acting like a jerk while you’re on the job. That second point is even more salient when you work in the media and you tactlessly extol why certain people deserve to die. That was the lesson KFI radio hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou got a taste of this week after they made “insensitive and inappropriate” remarks about Whitney Houston following her untimely death.

This past Tuesday, Kobylt was talking about how people close to Houston might be secretly reacting to the singer’s death:

She’s been cracked out for 20 years, and we heard how obnoxious she was these parties, I mean, she’s doing handstands, she’s babbling like an idiot, running around … she’s a mess … She’s been doing this for 20 years…. So, how much of a pain in the ass do you think she was? Can you imagine, you’re CLIVE DAVIS, and she has not been — she has not had her head screwed on right for 20 years? At some point you’re just sick of it all, and so is everybody else in the industry, all her friends and hangers on, everybody who knew had to deal with her, it’s like, ‘ah, Jesus, here comes the crack ho again, what’s she gonna do; Oh, look at that, she’s doing handstands next to the pool. Very good, crack ho, nice.’ After a while, everybody’s exhausted. And then you find out she’s dead. It’s like, ‘really … took this long?’

The radio station condemned Kobylt’s remarks and issued a public apology to Houston’s family. Additionally, Kobylt and Chiampou have been suspended until February 27 due to Kobylt’s assbaggery. Kobylt offered his own apology, as well, saying they “made a mistake” and that they “accept the station’s decision” to suspend the radio pair.

As is their wont, people on Twitter reacted. Here’s a sample of what people are saying.

WHAT IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE?? #MeanAintCute “Suspended John and Ken apologize for Whitney ‘crack ho’ comments http://t.co/ePrYNn1Y 2 hours ago via Twitter for BlackBerry® ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

This is where you call complain KFI 640am in LA, the ken & john show #CALL 818-559-2252 @johnandkenshow calling Whitney a Crack How 1 day ago via Echofon ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

RT @BigTiggerShow Radio jocks suspended for calling Whitney a ‘crack ho’ <= Why would they suspend him for THAT? Goddamn sensitive… 1 minute ago via TweetDeck ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

@TheOnion good story for you: radio station admits it was wrong to suspend DJ for calling Whitney Houston a crack ho, concedes he was right 10 hours ago via Twitter for BlackBerry® ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

Ken Clark and John Prescott are like those two old guys off The Muppet Show. In a good way. #bbcqt 19 hours ago via Twitter for Mac ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

So des 2 ppl in LA were tlkin bout Whitney Houston callin her a Crack Hoe n all dey did was suspend dem smh really 3 hours ago via Mobile Web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

Was Whitney Houston in fact a “Crack Ho”? Was this something to suspend talk show hosts John & Ken from KFI? WTF?http://t.co/ENFFY3vs 19 hours ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

KFI weenies suspend John & Ken for Whitney Houston remarks: http://t.co/tVuhKN3s 21 hours ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

@KFIAM640 REALLY. After all the years of berating people of all races. It’s Whitney that you suspend Jon & Ken over. Way to get it wrong. 18 hours ago via Twitter for iPad ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

KFI Radio Suspend Jon and Ken for Whitney Houston Comments – http://t.co/V0BqeBxO What are people getting out of making comments like this? 20 hours ago via Tweet Button ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

@ktla John and Ken should be permanently suspended from the airwaves just for being asshats. 19 minutes ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

  • Marlys Taylor

    I can’t even believe that John & Ken were suspended they should be allowed to give their opinion!! They have done and continue to do good for CA. Look at all the bull they have to put up with and the comments that are made about them. Whitney Houston’s life hasn’t been a secret none of the magazine reporters were suspended!

    • http://www.webpronews.com/author/drew-bowling Drew Bowling

      As I mentioned in the first sentence of the article, they’re entitled to express whatever they want. The right of free speech, however, doesn’t preclude any ramifications from whatever free-floating bile someone wishes to spit into a microphone – especially when you’re on your employers dime. For whatever good they’ve done for California, it doesn’t give them a free pass to say that a deeply troubled human being deserved to die. Further, they’re fortunate to live in a country with free speech laws tolerant enough where a paltry suspension from their job is all the penalty they receive.

      And as far as the comments that are made about them, I’d say they’ve been pretty deft at making themselves a target for such ire.

      • Tony T.

        Thank you for this article Drew!
        I couldn’t have put it Clearer!
        I posted a comment on KFI’s J & K suspension Notice, under one of those “Freedom of Speech” WACKOZ. If you can, check it out here http://www.kfiam640.com/pages/jk2010.html?article=9772225
        (Look for Tony T.)
        This is basically it in the Quotes:

        “Though I do support Freedom of Speech, Eric; Radio, Television, and other similar types of like Media, is a PUBLIC Forum…There are Many, Myself included, who are Die-hard KFI640 listeners and Supporters, who Could be Offended by what is Spoken On-Air! Think about it, if your JOB is at Risk, would YOU take a Chance at Offending people, Just because you Can?!

        Feel free to comment back.
        – Thank You, KFI! –

        Tony T.
        (Btw, I am a Black Male)”

        Thanks again, Drew! You ROCK!!!

    • http://yahoo.com mae mae

      Its not what they said, its they way they said it, she has passed away now and they talked about her like she was trash, so they should be FIRED

      • Tony T.

        FIRING those two may be a *Bit* extreme, Mae mae, but at Least I give KFI credit for taking Some action against such Drivel!
        Check out my comments listed here on this article.

    • TarzanJane

      Whitney H was a crack Addict, Ghetto crazed women who self destructed as out of control junkies. Her handlers dressed her up nicely, was photo shopped into a presentable human form. The reality, Read the autopsy report-“The final autopsy asserts that toxicology testing “showed cocaine, benzoylecgonice, cocaethylene, marijuana, Xanax, Flexiril, and Benadryl…Death was due to drowning due to effects of atherosclerotic heart disease and cocaine use Various prescription pill bottles were found in the living room and bedroom of the hotel suite but the bathroom was where the cocaine was found. “Located on the south portion of the counter was a small spoon with a white crystal substance in it and a rolled up piece of white paper, along with other miscellaneous items. Located in the top drawer in the north side of the counter were remnants of a white powdery substance and a portable mirror on a base. On the bottom of that base were more remnants of a white powdery substance.””Whitney’s eyes were congested and there was a bloody purge coming from her nose. perforation of the posterior nasal septum, and resuscitative abrasions of anterior chest.
      Whitney’s upper teeth “have been replaced with a full arch maxillary dental prosthesis supported by dental implants. There are natural lower teeth present.

  • Kathi

    J & K are always on the edge–and usually this is OK. I think the timing was really bad this time. No one knows (as of Feb. 17) exactly how or why Whitney Houston died–but her life was not easy–drugs, abusive relationships, poor choices. Name it and it was so screwed up for her. And yet, her voice was fantastic, phenominal, there aren’t enough superlatives to describe it. J & K are not afraid to “go there”–this time they blew it. I hope this doesn’t change their willingness to challenge the system.

  • Jeff

    FREE SPEECH is just that . there is no middle ground , I do not listen to their show , nor will I , BUT they have FREE SPEECH , so suck it !!!

    • http://yahoo.com mae mae

      Suck you jeff,,she is dead you dont talk about the living nor thedead the way they do,, what wrong with you people,,you didnt have parents to raise you, free speech my ASS

  • http://n/a roger montoya

    John and Ken suspended? Please keep these racist, anti union jerks
    off the air. I would like to go back to listening to the rest of
    your progamming but I need for you to do the honorable thing instead of letting them continue to spread their vicious poison over the air!

  • http://yahoo.com mae mae

    Ah HAH thats what john and ken get,, they need to get FIRED next,thats the only way they no how to talk is the STUPID way,you need to be fired STUPID,, like i said AH HAH HAH HAH all in yo FACE

  • joe

    Radio Station way over reacted. Truth is she was an obnoxious druggie, we are not amazed she finally overdosed herself, and we want John and Ken reinstated with full back pay. We also want Whitney’s family to issue an appology to John and Ken.

    • myGod

      You sound like a complete idiot! No more comment necessary – ignorant person.

  • Lynn campbell

    I wish John and were off the radio for good. They seem to bring out the worst in people. I stopped listening to them about two years ago. They appeal to those who like to shoot off at the mouth before engaging their brain. Really people, it this intelligent radio?

  • ches

    Freedom of Speech in the home of the free?

    My arse!

    In the UK and Europe (the actual rest of the ruddy world), this can be said without major panic riots.

  • http://www.ibizwhiz.com Gregory Morgan

    Lol, I listened to KFI alot wile living in LA area. Those two were hard for me to listen to. They seemed to me to be the twin personification of the term moron.

  • HB

    They called it like they see it. It is a shame what she did to herself, but it does not change the truth. She was what she was. Not a star to be revered. I was astonished to see her in reality TV and in interviews. Out of respect to her family, I would suggest that we just let sleeping dogs lie and forget about her. Unless of course, this is all about money anyway $$$.

  • Vic

    I’m as red-blooded an American as anyone else but have to side with CHES on this one. Anywhere else nobody give’s a darn what a couple of outspoken radio jockey’s have to say. In America though where we supposedly tout flexing our muscle to stand up for freedom of speech and constitutional rights people get all bent out of shape. What a bunch of pansies if that’s what the mass American audience has tuned to…if you don’t like what these guys say then don’t listen to their show. If you want to take it to the next level, write to their sponsors. Aside from that grow up and stop whining already.

    • Tony T.

      I am a Red-blooded American, too, Vic…Yet, I’ll post what I did on KFI’s site, Here, for you as well:

      “Though I do support Freedom of Speech; Radio, Television, and other similar types of like Media, is a PUBLIC Forum…There are Many, Myself included, who are Die-hard KFI640 listeners and Supporters, who Could be Offended by what is Spoken On-Air! THINK about it, if your JOB is at Risk, would YOU take a Chance at Offending people, Just because you Can?!

      Feel free to comment back.
      – Thank You, KFI! –

      Tony T.
      (Btw, I am a Black Male)”

  • http://nineside.com MR NFL


  • http://nineside.com Mac G

    The only good show on KFI is Coast To Coast anyway,all the other shows are just red neck radio at its best- it’s just a matter of time till john over doses on ken’s nuts in a motel room and dies-mark my words.

    • John 8:32

      There’s a common thread… that is continuous through the 24 hours of radio station programming on kfi. and that comment thread is to maintain the white middle-class agenda throughout every radio program on the station. Which is the obvious racial group that the station is catering to. You have these two idiots John and Ken… you have the selfish clown Tim Conway Jr., narrowminded attorney Bill Handel. Also a clown that comes on the weekend that calls himself Jesus Christ… even though the original Jews were black, and Jesus was a man of color. All this dangling by the thread “We Are Blessed To Be White.”

      Now to my point… you claim coast-to-coast is a good radio show. I’m sure a lot of other people do as well… I listen to this show for tens of years… I gave it every chance in the book. I finally came to the conclusion that even this show has a secret agenda. That of maintaining the white male mystique. Even though it’s scientific fact… Life began in Africa… and then spread out all over the world… even so-called white people do not share a common genetic heritage, instead they come from different lineages that pass through Africa and Asia, the same can be said for all non-African populations. In other words you’re either an African or a descendent of an African. Now let’s not forget the facts… that so-called whites are only 20% of the world population soon going down to single digits (which you’ll never hear on this show) Now what do I hear said on this show, time and time again… they only talk about the so-called white man’s existence… on this planet and other planets. Which in reality is an absolute joke… even the aliens they talk about are always have nor-tic characteristics… are they are the color gray, or some sort of an animal. They hardly ever uses the word Africa… or Africans… they use the code word “The Ancients!”

      You think I’m being hard on the show? They never have any black guests on the show to speak on historical matters.

      Just up-sets me every time I think about this station.

      Finally… once, they had a black man or man of color speaking on the Moors… in ancient times. I anticipated this show because I knew the majority of the moors were black men. As the show progressed about five minutes into the show… the gentleman being interviewed happened to mention that the ancient moors were black. At that point George Noory said I’m having a problem hearing you. So we are going to take a commercial break and clear-up the problem. (I could hear him perfectly…) after the commercial break George Noory said we will have to reschedule him for another time because of technical difficulties. Needless to say this man was never rescheduled… nor anyone else to speak about the Moors being black.

      John and Ken… are two racist stooges… doing what they’re told.

  • JayCee

    I agree with freedom of speech and all but at least we should respect one another. Whitney is dead and yes she did some wrong things and made some bad choices in life but haven’t we all. “He who without sin cast the first stone”! Think about how you would want to be treated is what I’m saying. Words really hurt and to make such horrible remarks about Ms. Houston is totally unjustice. How would you feel if these remarks were said about your mom, wife, daughter or any female of your family…dead or alive? Just be sensitive to the other persons feelings. Say what you wanna but sometimes itz better to keep silent than to speak loud! Let Ms. Houston R.I.P. now.

  • PC

    So John is a bit edgy, Ken is the opposing voice of reason. It’s a pity our reactions are so polarized along racial and political lines. So John went over the top. Bad John. Whack. Now get over it. The childish drivel above is equally as wrong as the comments by Kobylt. Grow up folks. Act with a modicum of civility and perhaps we can all learn to get along.

    an American mongrel.

  • radicaltruth

    John and Ken are caustic and abrasive to be sure. Some of the claims that they’re racist are ridiculous – they berate and criticize bad character, no matter the ethnic origin or genetic makeup. Was it in poor taste and over the line to call her a ‘ho’ ? I think so.. but not worthy of a suspension for the amount of time they received. A more appropriate punishment would have been for a rational psychologist or counselor to be a guest on their show and explain why their comments were not just severely rude, but also what civility means for our society.

  • Dan

    Free speech is only free as long as it is directed to the right and not the left. Talk show hosts like Bill Mahr can say outragious remarks like the ones to Sarah Palin and its all fine! Let it offend the left and it becomes all of this!!!!

  • Bob

    KFI pays these guys to act this way, the rest of us listen to hear their rants; get over it. I didn’t listen to KFI after the suspension. I can take 15 min of Handel in the morning, 1 minute in the afternoon; 0 minutes of that strident woman who filled in the rest of the week; so I went over to FM; will be there until K&J are back on the air; or maybe I’ll stay on FM – it sounded pretty good.

  • Glenn

    I seem to remember that Mad TV did a lot of portrayals of Whitney Houston,
    concerning her crack use and they were funny. The statements by John and Ken were crass, but nothing to get suspended for. People are too thin skinned nowadays, looking for any excuse to be offended. Just listen if you like them, don’t if you can’t stand them. There’s other stuff to listen to… Yes, and most of it is boring.
    I’m sticking with John and Ken in the afternoons.