WASHINGTON — The Rev. Jesse Jackson dropped by the FCC on Wednesday to lobby chairman Reed Hundt for a more activist agenda when it comes to promoting minority ownership of broadcast properties.
Jackson noted that recent Supreme Court decisions and congressional actions have limited the government’s ability to subsidize minority ownership, but he also argued that rules recently enacted by the Federal Communications Commission have made it even tougher for black and female broadcasters.
In a letter to Hundt — who announced May 27 that he will step down as soon as the White House finds a replacement — Jackson also claimed that the FCC has decreased the number of investigations of equal employment opportunity complaints and failed to respond to civil-rights groups who want minority contracting quotas for the broadcasting, cable and telephony industries.
Although the FCC had little choice, Jackson argued that the agency should have done more to protect minorities when it implemented the Telecommunications Act of 1996, which allowed big media companies to get even bigger.
After the meeting, Hundt issued a statement that stated the meeting with Jackson was “productive and positive.”