America has a major hate hoax problem. Why? Because hate hoaxes can be very profitable.
Here’s how this Seth Dunlap mess allegedly started.
NEW ORLEANS — WWL Radio host Seth Dunlap is planning to sue the radio station’s parent company over an anti-gay slur directed at him from the station’s own Twitter account that he says is the culmination of years of homophobic and hostile workplace conduct.
Dunlap, through his attorney Megan Kiefer, said that he submitted to a polygraph test to head off any speculation that he had sent the tweet himself.
Earlier this month, somebody with access to the WWL Radio Twitter account responded to a tweet from Dunlap’s personal Twitter, referring to him with an anti-gay slur.
After the tweet, Dunlap – who is openly gay – hosted his show as usual, but announced the next day he would be taking a leave of absence.
Good thing about that polygraph.
Normally people don’t rush in to head off suspicion that they sent a hateful tweet about themselves by taking a lie detector test. But in this case, that quickly proved to be needed.
WWL Radio officials believe the homophobic slur tweeted from the station’s official account to talk show host Seth Dunlap earlier this month was sent from Dunlap’s personal cellphone, according to a New Orleans Police Department report.
The station also has accused Dunlap, who is 35 and openly gay, of threatening the station that he would go “scorched earth” over the tweet and demanding more than $1.8 million in compensation while he was facing personal financial troubles, said the police report, which was obtained Thursday through a public records request.
The station said the forensic expert, John Conroy, discovered the tweet was sent from an Internet protocol address associated with Dunlap’s phone, according to the police report. It said Conroy’s investigation involved examining the station’s “Internet system, software and hardware inside the company’s offices.”
According to WWL Radio, the station had been receiving “letters in the past few months regarding wage garnishment” for Dunlap’s personal debts, the police report said.
“Apparently, Mr. Dunlap has a variety of unpaid credit cards and personal loans, and the companies holding the debt are going into collections for the unpaid amount,” it said.
Hate crime hoaxes are a huge problem in America. And they’re only getting worse because they’re seen as a ticket to big bucks.