While other radio stations are pulling the plug on the song “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” one Kentucky radio station resisted the controversial trend and played the song in a two-hour marathon over the weekend.
In a desire to buck the growing trend of dropping the tune for reasons of political correctness, the radio station WAKY played five versions of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Sunday.
The station’s director of programming, Joe Fredele, told WLKY he wasn’t sure why the song was so controversial.
“We’ve played this song for years,” he said. “You know, this song is older than WAKY is. It’s almost 70 years old.”
The song has recently come under scrutiny in light of the #MeToo movement, with critics saying that the issue of consent is the underlying problem with the song, which describes a man’s ultimately successful attempts to get a woman to stay with him while she wants to go home for the night.
Amy Turner, the director of sexual assault services at The Center for Women and Families, told WLKY, “We really need to think about the impact that songs have, not just ‘Baby, It’s Cold Outside,’ but numerous songs that we decide to play on the radio.”
She said that The Center for Woman and Families have no official position on the song, but she thinks that the controversy surrounding the song should be considered progress.
Turner said, “The reason that there’s any sort of conversation is because there is a conversation about sexual assault and the treatment of women in particular.”
A California radio station, KOIT in San Francisco, was among the first that pulled the Christmas classic from its playlist.
However, the station decided that it would keep playing the song after there was such a public outcry over the decision, according to KPIX, a CBS station in San Francisco.
The program director for the radio station, Brian Figula, said in a statement, “After hearing from thousands of Bay Area listeners via polling, phone calls, emails and social media, KOIT has concluded that the vast majority consider the song to be a valuable part of their holiday tradition, and they still want to hear it on the radio.”
He continued, “KOIT’s listeners have spoken, and the overwhelming message is they do want to hear ‘Baby, It’s Cold Outside’ on our station, as they have throughout the years.”
“More than seven out of every 10 listeners who responded said although some lyrics of the song may reflect a different era and a different sensibility than today, still they love the tradition and history of the song, and want to hear it as part of their holiday season,” Figula added, according to KPIX.
WLKY reported that while Fredele supports the #MeToo movement against sexual aggressiveness, he doesn’t understand why this particular song has been singled out.
“This song is not about that,” he said. “All it is, is a dialogue between a man and a woman, and at the end of the song, you hear them harmonize together, so they’re agreeing basically.”
He added, “It’s just a fun way of saying, ‘Hey this our vote for that song. It’s a fun song. It’s a romantic song, don’t pick on it.'”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.