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The Voice Of the People
[FINAL Edition]
The Washington Post - Washington, D.C.
Author: Kennard, William E
Date: Oct 23, 2000
Start Page: A.23
Section: OP/ED

With the same energy it takes to light your table lamp, the new 10 to 100 watt low-power FM service will create radio for the people. Low-power FM will allow schools, churches and other local organizations to use the public airwaves to make their voices heard. In short, low-power FM enhances democracy on the dial: It fosters new opportunities for true community radio to flourish in an age marked by the increasing consolidation and homogenization of the industry and the marketplace of ideas.

This attempt to kill low-power FM is not about ideology--it's about money. Low-power FM has been embraced by the National Association of Evangelicals, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the National Education Association, and the National Council of Churches. Indeed, we have received more than 1,200 applications for low-power FM licenses in the 20 states from which we have accepted them. The only group siding against the establishment of low- power FM is big radio, who in a textbook case of protectionism are trying to use the government to smother any potential competition.

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