In my mind, it's fine if you want to be a leader of an organized protest movement, but you can't also be in a journalistic role. You can't be the host of a journalism program and plead that you are different than the reporter who is going to come on a minute after you introduce the program.
However, World of Opera, distributed nationally by NPR, is produced by WDAV, a classical-music radio station in North Carolina, and it doesn't see any conflict of interest where Soundprint does. "Ms. Simeone's activities outside of this job are not in violation of any of WDAV's employee codes and have had no effect on her job performance," a station spokesperson wrote in an email to the AP. Interestingly, although the national network itself "questioned" Simeone's activism, saying that its code of ethics applies to cultural radio shows like hers, NPR is emphasizing that it can't take action against someone it doesn't employ. "We are not her employer, but she is a host for a show that we distribute," an NPR spokesperson told the AP. "She's a public person who represents NPR and public radio."
For the record, Simeone defends her choice to protest here:
I find it puzzling that NPR objects to my exercising my rights as an American citizen -- the right to free speech, the right to peaceable assembly -- on my own time in my own life. I'm not an NPR employee. I'm a freelancer. NPR doesn't pay me. I'm also not a news reporter. I don't cover politics. I've never brought a whiff of my political activities into the work I've done for NPR World of Opera. What is NPR afraid I'll do -- insert a seditious comment into a synopsis of Madame Butterfly?