By Gaywired Staff | Article Date: 6/04/2009 11:47 AM
It’s always such a pick-me-up to get a letter from lawyers, especially from the sensitive folks at Rockstar, Inc., and Rockstar Beverage Corp, makers of Rockstar Energy Drinks. (That’s an explanation, by the way, not a plug.)
GayWired recently posted a story about a website—TheTruthAboutRockstar.com—which seeks to publicize the connection between Rockstar, Inc., and right-wing, homophobic radio host Michael Savage (né Michael Weiner). In doing so, GayWired referred to Savage as a co-founder of Rockstar, Inc., and referred to the company’s “founders’ homophobic, racist and otherwise discriminatory public statements.”
What was wrong with this statement? The legal communiqué certainly didn’t deny that Savage has branded gay men as “sodomites,” told radio show callers to “get AIDS and die,” referred to lesbian marriages as “child abuse,” and called a transgender murder victim a “psychopath” and a “freak,” nor that he recently landed on a short list of “hate promoters” who are banned from entering Britain.
No, the problem, according to Rockstar’s attorneys, is that “Mr. Savage is not a co-founder of Rockstar. Russell Weiner, Rockstar’s CEO and principal shareholder is the sole founder of Rockstar and Mr. Savage has never been an officer, director, employee or shareholder of Rockstar.”
GayWired regrets naming Michael Savage as a co-founder of Rockstar and apologizes for the error. Russell Weiner, who happens to be Savage’s son, is the sole founder of the company. As the attorneys iterate, “Mr. Savage is not affiliated with Rockstar in any manner.”
GayWired presumes that a similar clarification is on its way to the Nevada Secretary of State. For according to that office, Savage’s company, Savage Productions, uses the same mailbox and is registered at the same street address as Rockstar. Also, Rockstar’s sole officer other than Russell Weiner is Savage’s wife and Weiner’s mother, Janet Weiner, who fills the positions of director, treasurer, and secretary. Ms. Weiner must be exceedingly adept at these diverse responsibilities since she is also the director, treasurer, and secretary of Savage Productions.
And if Weiner and Savage did not co-found Rockstar, they did, according to the Oakland Tribune, co-found the Paul Revere Society to promote conservative causes and protest illegal immigration. “The Internal Revenue Service revoked the society’s tax-exempt status in 2006,” notes Tribune reporter Josh Richman, and some search results for PRS now redirect users to Savage’s site. (Doubtless no society activities took place on Rockstar, Inc., company time.) Last month, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom returned a $25,000 contribution to his 2010 California gubernatorial campaign from Weiner.
In a final note, Weiner’s lawyers also protest GayWired’s assertion that “the public has finally decided to go after the family business.” “No such public movement exists,” their letter insists. So in addition to looking up the definitions of “affiliated with” and “in any manner,” GayWired can only suggest that those who are circling the wagons at Rockstar add an Internet search engine to their computers. Googling themselves could be highly educational.