John Gormley Learns “Little Lesson” in Diversity
If you listened to John Gormley’s show last week, you were probably disgusted by his transphobic slurs, his mockery of sexual assault victims, and the way he stigmatized people living with HIV/AIDS. But if you really listened closely, you might have heard John tell his audience that he actually learned something important about gender diversity.
In 2017, for the third year in a row, Moose Jaw Pride participated in a Teen Wellness presentation that included information about HIV/AIDS, Gender & Sexual Diversity, Healthy Relationships and Sexual Health. This is the kind of education that students across the country have been receiving for decades.
At one of the participating schools, some of the parents had concerns about the content of these presentations and contacted John to help them air their grievances in public.
The show played out like a game of telephone becoming more distorted with each retelling. What classroom presenters said to students, some students repeated to parents, and some of those parents repeated this to other parents, and some of this was repeated to John which he then repeated to listeners.
Before anyone knew what was happening, John was on air with bizarre accusations and abusive transphobic language, like a scene pulled straight out of Mean Girls. For the host of a “News” talk show, John sure has a knack for ignoring the other side and getting all of the facts jumbled up into an incoherent frenzy of hate and panic.
Ironically, for someone so disgusted by what could be said to a class of high school students, John apparently had no problem repeating perverse rumours to an audience that may include those same students, without any content warnings.
Click the link below if you want to hear the show for yourself, however, listener discretion is strongly advised:
Throughout the segment, John expressed his disgust for a human being—-a gay man, a presenter from another organization, who had the courage to talk openly about how he became HIV positive. John used obviously abusive language to mock this person for being sexually assaulted, for having a voice and ultimately just for existing.
When John had finished running our names through the mud with gossip and lies, I was surprised by the silence of good people who heard this program and said nothing.
Of course, when his producer contacted me the next day for an interview, I wasn’t interested. My email response went like this:
“Good afternoon Ivana,
Thank you for your invitation.
At this point, I’m simply not interested in being a part of your show.
This is partly due to the derogatory and abusive language directed at one of the other presenters by John Gormley on Wednesday.
I do not feel inclined to engage an individual who freely repeats transphobic slurs and uses terms like “butt rape” to make light of sexual assault.
However, should you recognize the need, I would be happy to offer diversity training to your announcers and staff on how to show basic dignity and respect to members of the LGBT+ community.
Joe Wickenhauser, BA, MA
Moose Jaw Pride”
On Friday, John took to the air waves to continue his attack but with a few important changes.
He stopped using transphobic slurs. He stopped making dismissive references to sexual assault. He stopped stigmatizing a person living with HIV/AIDS.
Although he stopped repeating transphobic slurs, John never apologized. Throughout his show, John continued to attack me, Moose Jaw Pride and questioned the effectiveness of our diversity training program.
However, by the end of his segment, it was clear that John had learned something about diversity.
This activist against political correctness learned that transphobic language is abusive and should not be used in a public debate. He demonstrated his understanding of this fact by changing his language.
While it may seem like a very small lesson, John has shown us the importance of diversity training and of speaking up in a world that wishes that we just didn’t exist. Despite all the hatred, his small change in tone gives us hope that even the most closed minds might one day find understanding and acceptance.
This is the value and the purpose of our diversity training program and we thank John Gormley for showing us that it absolutely works.
To join us in speaking out against hateful transphobic language being used on air, please consider filing an official complaint with the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council:
650 CKOM (Rawlco Radio)
Wed. Sept. 27 @ 10am
John Gormley Live
Use of abusive transphobic language, language that makes light of sexual assault
Contact Rawlco Radio
To request that the show be removed by the broadcaster from its SoundCloud and Podcasting page, contact the General Manager for Rawlco Radio / CJME here:
To make a donation to Moose Jaw Pride and the important work that we are doing visit: