DJ Cipha Sounds Suspended Indefinitely After Controversial Haitian Remarks

Bridget Bland, Black Voices, December 22, 2010

New York City radio show jocks are known for ruffling some feathers. But a joke gone wrong just cost Hot 97’s DJ Cipha Sounds his gig.

On Dec.18, the hip-hop shock jock went on ‘The Cipha Sounds and Rosenberg Show’ and stated that he was HIV negative because he steers clear of having sexual intercourse with Haitian women.

“The reason I’m HIV negative is ’cause I don’t mess with Haitian girls,” the Bronx native, born Luis Diaz, said.

An onslaught of Haitians flooded the station’s lines with their complaints and disapproval via Twitter and Facebook. Then yesterday (Dec. 21), activists and community leaders led a protest outside the Hot 97 West Village offices.

{snip}

“Mr. Diaz said that he made a joke. That was not a joke. That was a serious insult, not only to Haitian women, but also to the entire Haitian community, and to all women, regardless of your nationality,” Eugene [Brooklyn councilman Mathieu Eugene] said. “And today, we are here together, to ensure that Mr. Diaz be removed from the station.”

Executives at the radio station’s parent company, Emmis Communications, have now decided on a three-part plan to address the fiasco. Cipha Sounds has been suspended indefinitely, and according to a press release, the former MTV VJ “will immediately undertake sensitivity training focused on the Haitian community and specifically, the challenges the Haitian community has faced in terms of the HIV epidemic.”

Hot 97 will also partner with local community leaders to use the influence of HOT 97 and to increase awareness of HIV and community programs to address the HIV epidemic.

{snip}

“Cipha made an immediate public apology and recognizes his insensitivity and the negative impact his comments have on all Haitians,” Cameron [senior vice president and marketing manager Alex Cameron] clarified in the new press release. “It’s a very regrettable and unfortunate circumstance for all involved and particularly because we know this is not the nature of this young man who has been an advocate of the Haitian community and a big part of our fundraising efforts for Haiti.”

{snip}

Just a few hours after his harsh remarks, the 34-year-old radio personality apologized for making the unflattering comments. “I made a stupid, tasteless joke that was a one-liner that was taken totally the wrong way,” he said. {snip}

{snip}

 

fire-DJ

Luis Diaz, aka Cipha Sounds.

Topics:

Share This

We welcome comments that add information or perspective, and we encourage polite debate. If you log in with a social media account, your comment should appear immediately. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may comment as a guest, using a name and an e-mail address of convenience. Your comment will be moderated.

Comments are closed.