Walk For Power Short-Circuits

Somehow, it seemed just too good to be true. Touch FM‘s founder, Charles Clemons, has abandoned his cross-country trek to raise awareness of low-power FM and the plight of microradio stations engaged in electronic civil disobedience. A press release posted to the Walk For Power web site cites logistical reasons for having to abandon the journey; feats like these take planning and somewhat north of a pretty penny, as well as a network of helpful associates in-place before you begin.
Instead, says Clemons, “the road to L.A. is through Washington, D.C.,” and thus this past weekend he took again to the byways, to arrive in the nation’s capital on or around April 17. There, he will be greeted by the Prometheus Radio Project and Free Press, and will participate in a series of LPFM lobbying conferences and workshops later in the month.
While I’m glad the walk itself hasn’t been completely abandoned, and the detour-destination has a lot going for it, I surely hope that Clemons’ new local sponsors won’t abandon the second purpose of his initial journey, which is to emphasize the fact that unlicensed broadcasting itself is a phenomenon that played a significant role in the creation of LPFM. The fact that it continues (and has grown) to this day means something important. Mr. Clemons, and his $17,000 fine, are not symbols or figureheads; they represent something the other side calls “deniable assets,” which come in useful in wars such as the one for the airwaves.
In a rare, very public occasion, a “pirate” and those fighting in the halls of power for LPFM will work together in full-fledged, common cause. Let’s hope all constituencies get the props they deserve, for Mr. Clemons has already walked the walk more than anyone else in the room.