Radar radio is an underground music station owned by Ollie Ashley who is the son of Newcastle owner Mike Ashley. Radar has been running for nearly four years and has been a platform for DJ’s, MC’s and presenters to showcase their creativity to an audience that would otherwise be difficult to reach. Recently there have been allegations of sexual assault, racism and worker mis-treatment at the radio station and subsequently, staff disassociated themselves from the station, then radar radio closed down. The sexual allegations haven’t been followed through and no one yet has been charged with any crime. There is a lot of negativity coming out about the sexual nature of the culture at the radio station and the mis treatment of women. That is something that happens in many workplaces and after the recent Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein fiasco’s people are definitely more heightened to anything sexually degrading in workplaces.
I feel sorry for anyone who is a victim in this situation, and the young lady or ladies involved have had to go through an ordeal which is pervasive and damaging. An object however is a sum of its whole parts, and there are many parts to this kind of story that we often ignore. The first thing is that the type of music that is associated with Radar radio is very misogynistic, lacking in empathy and often violent. The individuals who are able to glorify misogyny in their music assist in the creation of any unstable environment they are consistently in. There is always an element of hypermasculinity with these situations, which is unhealthy to the men and especially women who share these spaces, because not everyone at Radar radio would have condoned the behaviour, and I’m sure there were plenty of people who were disgusted by it and hence the rats started fleeing the sinking ship. There is a famous quote.
‘ The only thing necessary for evil to exist, is for good men to do nothing’
With all the focus on the owner being white, Radar losing hundreds of thousands of pounds each year, non-payment for employees and the lack of suitable platforms for upcoming entertainers the real heartache of this story is how the women were abused and then disregarded. There was a serious rape allegation against a member of the group ‘gang fatale’ which sounds horrendous, and there were prominent female members of the radio station who were also sexually assaulted. I’m sure the list of abuses is extensive but I do not see why criminal proceedings haven’t been pursued. This may be something to do with the non-disclosure agreements that were signed by staff members, but even so turning a blind eye to rape and abuse is reprehensible in itself.
I hope that anyone who was well intended at radar goes on to have successful careers and those sick individuals who perpetuate a culture of misogyny and abuse get what’s coming to them. Some men find it very difficult to act cordially around women, and this can be seen in how they approach women, talk about women and conduct themselves in their relationship. It’s sad to know that anyone has to go through this, let alone forced to experience a culture of sexual depravation on a daily basis. Day after day victims have had to face their perpetrators at Radar radio and staff members must have been suffering in silence and fear. They have been given a voice now, and hopefully those who have done no wrong can move on to positions were they can excel and showcase their skills because they deserve that at minimum.