On Friday, WCPT 820 AM and I parted ways. The “official” reason was that they wanted to go in a more local direction. A few things:
1) I want to thank my amazing listeners and callers. It was a wonderful journey and I am grateful we were able to have important conversations about the key issues affecting our lives. It was a privilege and an honor to get to know you.
2) The show did not end from poor ratings. I more than tripled the ratings of the previous host and equaled or surpassed the conservative competition. I regularly filled 10 phone lines for three straight hours. I accomplished these competitive ratings and full lines in spite of virtually no advertising or public relations support. Fact.
3) So many of you privately contacted me and asked how you can contact WCPT. Since I can’t get back to everyone, you can reach the station manager, Matt Comings, at email@example.com. Please be polite! Matt is a very nice guy and the decision wasn’t his.
4) Ben Joravsky is replacing me. I’ve interviewed him many times. Ben is a nice person and I wish him the best.
5) I am exploring my next venture. That could be a show around the area or possibly national syndication. Time will tell. I am also still the Executive Director of www.TruthWinsOut.org. Please check out my website and support our work.
6) I will be broadcasting today at 2PM (CT) on Facebook Live to thank my listeners and the city of Chicago for its warm embrace.
Thank you for your love and support these past few years. I’ve had an amazing time with you. I look forward to our next chapter together.
I am not happy. I looked forward to listening to your show every day, Wayne. I’m sure you’ll land on your feet, as talented and affable as you are, but I feel bad for those of us who won’t be able to listen to you any more. Hugs to Doinkers!
Nothing but the best of luck. As a moderate conservative talk show host in Indianapolis who is from Illinois, we did not agree on much, but I did appreciate your passion for your positions.
Sad and confused right now.
I emailed Matt.
You are as good as it gets.
I have a huge hole in my afternoons now.
All the best!
Wayne, you gave a first-class good-bye to your many fans. While some people would have trashed WCPT for their classless dismissal of you, you instead took the high road and kept this positive.
WCPT has made a huge mistake in letting you go. You are truly one of the top progressive radio hosts out there and it won’t be long before we see you on another network.
Thanks for all the wonderful work you have done to keep people informed and inspired! I wish you all the best and will be listening and watching whenever I can!
Barbara Wand James
You are the best talk show host I’ve ever had the pleasure to listen to and speak with in my life. I’m 64 years old, so I’ve pretty much heard it all. I know you’ll go on to much bigger and better things than WCPT. Most of WCPT’s listening audience know that they’re ratings will absolutely tank now and the upper management who probably were paid off by Governor Rouner know it but they only care about the cash money they received. I hope they’re indicted, tried, fined and go to jail for a very long time. God bless you Wayne. I’m very sad to see you leave, but very glad for you because I know you’ll probably go to the national media scene.
I had nothing against Wayne Besen. I simply stopped listening to progressive talk radio because it isn’t progressive. It’s the voice of the democratic party. Jeffrey Santos started to realize that after the many arguments I had with him about how progressive talk radio was becoming a rubber stamp for the democratic party. Unfortunately for Jeff, he didn’t stay around long enough to admit I was right.
Judy Deam 3rd day, no Wayne Besen show….life more deflated…you had me calling my Congress people, calling Gov. Rauner, investigating stories, highlighting groups and protests interested in etc….you have been an activist and your show had me taking notes, mouth agape, and by the end of it, I was ready to “rumble” (in an informed democratic way)….your replacement knows the city politick and is an interesting writer, but what is (still present tense I hope) great about your show is the activism, the pluck, insights, chutzpah, backstories, great callers, you name it….writers can be activists, but this is where your show was different, your activism makes everything REAL allcaps…not just telling stories but making stories move us (without telling us to; we just wanted to)….there’s room for all the different radio personalities out there….YOU NEED TO REMAIN ONE OF THEM (WCPT, we need Wayne!)…too much going on without your voice, uggh
Sorry to see you go. I’m a moderate Democrat out here in the Western boondocks. I thought your show was alway informative. Don’t understand the gripe about Democratic Party and Progressive. I always thought they were rather compatible. Good luck in your next ventures.
I’m extremely sad and disappointed by WCPT AM decision to terminate your contract. I want to personally thank you for giving me a clearer view of politics and a greater understanding of the plight of the LGBT Community, My afternoons will never be the same again without you. Best wishes in your future endeavors.
Jerry L. Mitchell
Wayne, no one else can take your place. You are the best talk show host I have
ever heard. I am a progressive Democrat through and through and you inspired
me to run for office. I am now a school board trustee. We need you and many more
like you. You are a gift and we miss you tremendously!
Wayne, I miss you and your wonderful show. I was shocked when I heard what happened. So abrupt for everyone concerned, you and your listeners. Shame on WCPT. I hope you can stay in Chicago with another radio show if that is something you would want. You would have many listeners and fans and would be very successful. Blessings to you and hope to hear you soon
Wayne, you were the best , so captivating with your passion for the truth and what is right for the middle class and the poor , you were a much needed voice for us working people out here. I looked forward to your show every weekday with enthusiasm and now feel a sad void now that I can’t hear you anymore. You’re replacement cannot at all compare to you , ( he puts me to sleep ) and does not have anywhere near your extensive knowledge about All the political issues. WCPT made a huge mistake in firing you , I am positive they lost numerous listeners since your departure. Hope to hear you on another station or television soon. You a greatly missed.
You were always on point and entertaining. Sorry, but I am not “getting ” Ben. Will look forward to hearing you in the future!