"My easy solution for the park rangers, and hopefully snipers who are hopefully going to be watching for this, is to shoot on sight. [Shooting noise] Shoot. Done," said Bell, about protesters targeting Mount Rushmore during a June 26 episode of her radio show. "No more messing with monuments. You wanna mess with a monument? Done."
These comments were condemned by many on social media, with people calling for KDKA Radio to fire Bell. Eventually that spilled over into criticizing those that pay the bills of Bell’s show, including local bakery BreadWorks Bakery, which was heard advertising on Bell’s show.
Some people were calling on people to boycott BreadWorks, a North Side-based bakery that supplies wholesale goods to hundreds of clients in Western Pa.
And yesterday, the bakery announced that it will be pulling all of its ads off of Bell’s afternoon drive-time show.
“On Tuesday, one of our KDKA Radio advertisements appeared during a segment of Wendy Bell’s afternoon show. We were shocked and saddened by her comments,” reads a Sept. 3 Facebook post. “BreadWorks does not condone violence. This is why we will not be advertising on her show any longer.”
KDKA Radio did not return a request for comment concerning this story.
This isn’t the first time Bell’s extremist and right-wing rhetoric has gotten her in trouble with advertisers. In April, Bell questioned if it was worth shutting down many parts of the American economy to avoid millions of Americans dying from coronavirus.
Shortly after these comments aired, the Original Mattress Factory, a regional mattress store, pulled its ads off of Bell’s show. Additionally, another longtime advertiser of Bell's show and KDKA Radio, car dealer Shults Ford, attempted to distance themselves from Bell in a Sept. 2 tweet that said "Shults Ford does not sponsor The Wendy Bell Show." As late as June 2019, Bell was a brand ambassador for Shults Lincoln, which is part of the Shults car-dealership family.
Earlier this week, a change.org petition was started, calling for KDKA Radio to remove Bell from the air. It has gathered more than 2,800 signatures as of print. Yesterday, despite the months-long controversy surrounding Bell and other hosts like Marty Griffin, KDKA Radio was given a Service to Journalism award by the Press Club of Western Pennsylvania.
Since April, KDKA Radio 1020 AM has dropped three spots in the Pittsburgh-area ratings and was the 5th most listened to station in the region in August, just narrowly beating out WESA 90.5 FM.