J. Paul Emerson

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Jimmy Coleman (b. - d. April 9, 2001 in Carlsbad, New Mexico),[1] known professionally as J. Paul Emerson, was an American talk radio personality who held time slots at several big market American radio stations over the course of his career. He is perhaps best remembered for his dismissal from the radio station KSFO in San Francisco, California in 1995, following controversial remarks he made about gays and people with AIDS. He famously appeared as a guest on the Phil Donahue Show.[2][3][4] Previous to that he was fired from another Bay city frequency, KFRC, for uttering anti-Asian remarks.[5][6] He was then hired by KSFO when it replaced its existing talk radio format with a conservative format called Hot Talk in an effort to improve ratings.[7]

KFSO controversy[edit]

He worked for KSFO for only six weeks before stirring up controversy, including reprimands from city officials. As SF Weekly reported..... "the man responsible for the most KSFO complaints is, of course, former KSFO morning man and Bay Area radio veteran J. Paul Emerson, who generated an impressive 42 letters during his 30 days at the station. Most of those gripes were part of an organized protest effort. While they were written in different styles on varying letterheads, all 42 cited the same Emersonian excesses and quoted identical passages from his short-lived show, including, "Alioto, get your butt ready. I guarantee you, you want stinking war, you got war you asshole."....[8] While at KFSO among his favorite targets was then mayor and current United States Senator from California, Dianne Feinstein . He was criticized by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, amongst others.[9] Before his firing by KFSO, following his Donahue appearance, he had created more angst by making anti-Asian comments, remarking that he "hated the Japs."[10]

Prior to San Francisco[edit]

Prior to his tenure in the San Francisco radio market, Emerson was on the air for a series of high-profile stations throughout the nation, including WRIT in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (1971-1972), KUPD in Phoenix, Arizona(1973), KGMQ in Honolulu, Hawaii (1975-1976) and WQHT, "Hot 97 FM" in New York City (1988).[11]


Emerson died at his home in Carlsbad, New Mexico on April 9, 2001. He was 58.[1]


  1. ^ a b "Street Talk", Radio & Records, April 27, 2001, p. 30.
  2. ^ Fugitive Cultures: Race, Violence, and Youth - Henry A. Giroux - Google Books. Books.google.com. Retrieved 2014-03-17.
  3. ^ John Tierney (1995-02-14). "A San Francisco Talk Show Takes Right-Wing Radio to a New Dimension - New York Times". San Francisco (Calif): Nytimes.com. Retrieved 2014-03-17.
  4. ^ "'Hot Talk' Radio Stirs San Francisco Airwaves". CSMonitor.com. Retrieved 2014-03-17.
  5. ^ Radio On: A Listener's Diary - Sarah Vowell - Google Books. Books.google.com. Retrieved 2014-03-17.
  6. ^ Lam, May (December 16, 1994). "Incendiary Remarks By KFRC Radio's Emerson Take Him Off Airwaves". AsianWeek. Archived from the original on June 11, 2014. Retrieved 2014-03-18.
  7. ^ Hunt, Karyn (February 16, 1995). "Conservative San Francisco Talk Show Host Fired". Associated Press. Retrieved 2014-03-18.
  8. ^ "J. Paul Emerson - San Francisco". Sfweekly.com. Retrieved 2014-03-17.
  9. ^ "Conservative Canned From Sf Airwaves - Time". Content.time.com. 1995-02-16. Retrieved 2014-03-17.
  10. ^ Radio Reader: Essays in the Cultural History of Radio - Google Books. Books.google.com. Retrieved 2014-03-17.
  11. ^ "Radio Broadcasting History, Radio People (E)". 440.com. Retrieved 2014-03-17.