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The Imus Thing II
Posted by: Dale Franks on Tuesday, April 10, 2007

I want to weigh in on Don Imus, with a bit of a different take than Bruce had earlier.
Imus claims he was caught up in the bit and it seemed appropriate at the time. Yeah, I can see that, but then I also understand that anyone who's been in public broadcasting for more than 10 minutes should also understand that it wouldn't fly...not for a minute.
Sorry, that's just flat wrong. You cannot do an unscripted comedy show for four hours every day, especially one that takes off on current events, and not occasionally make racially charged jokes. It can't be done.

Moreover, it shouldn't have to be done. Comedy can—and should—occasionally be racially charged. Just ask Richard Pryor, or, since he's dead, Carlos Mencia, Eddie Murphy, or any of a hundred comedians who use racially charged humor as a staple of their acts.

There is a clear and distinct difference between making racially charged comedic quips, and seriously hateful statements. And it's a distinction that all of us recognize. For years, WLIB in New York put "Imhotep" Gary Byrd on the air, and he used his show for serious—and seriously wierd—race-based conspiracy-mongering and hate. Nobody said a word.

If I was Imus, I'd refuse to apologize.

And I'd especially refuse to apologize to a hypocritical, lying media whore like Al Sharpton. Why he still has a public forum for anything is a mystery to me. This is a man who championed the Tawana Brawley case, even though he knew that Ms. brawley's story was an outright lie, and who went so far as to accuse Bronx DA Steven Pagones as being Tawana Brawley's rapist. A misstep for which he was held accountable in the ensuing libel suit.

There might be some people I'd kowtow to, but Al Sharpton certainly wouldn't be one of them. Al Sharpton is utter scum.

Imus made a joke. That's all it was.

And let's not pretend that the term "nappy-headed ho's" came out of the white community. Al Sharpton is engaged in nothing more than fascist tactics to impose his own brand of political correctness. But while he's willing to confront Imus on his radio show, he seems not to be interested in confronting hard-core rappers in studio, and demanding, in person, that they change their lyrics. In fact, here's a little insight into the sensibilities of the rap "community".

And the sad thing is, Sharpton's gutter tactics work, just like they do when newspapers print cartoons that offend Muslims, by being insufficiently servile to Mohammed. And as long as we bow down and grovel before those that use terrorist tactics to get their way, they will continue to use them to their benefit.

So now the I-man will have to take a two week suspension. But not this week. Because this week, you see, Imus is using his radio show to raise money for children—both black and white—who suffer from cancer and serious blood diseases.
 
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
It shows the sorry state of our culture when the "gotcha game" (catching somebody saying something that is embarrassing or ’politically incorrect’) gets this kind of reaction. I’m at a loss. America has lost its sense of humor and sense of perspective. This is language prudishness taken to an extreme. I’ve never been an Imus fan, but he’s really being mistreated here by the language prudes.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
The I-man used language that only certain people can use and not get called on it. Had Eddie Murphy used such language, and maybe he has for all I know, we would not have heard about it. Well maybe O’Reilly would have had a hissy fit. If anything this incident should be used to clean up everyone’s language. And the next rapper that uses "ho" in his lyrics should get the same reaction as the I-man; bet it won’t happen. Oh, I agree with you about Al Sharpton. And isn’t it so-o-o wonderful to see him treated as a respected politician.
 
Written By: AMR
URL: http://
The nation has always had demagogs like Sharpton. The difference is today nobody can call them on it. White people are afraid of being called racist and blacks with the exception of a few brave souls, like Bill Cosby, are more concerned with racial solidarity than what is best for their brothers. Racism has become a cottage industry, supported by hypersensitive blackmailers such as Jessie ‘Hymetown” Jackson. Jackson and his family have made millions by playing the race card. Don’t mention it, you might be a raciest if you criticize Jackson.

Imus is rude, crude and socially unacceptable, but he has an audience, and his brand of radio makes a lot of money. I believe it’s ratings week, so he will not have to serve his suspension until next week. His network will shed crocodile tears, but the I-man will stay on the air as long as he brings in listeners. They will pay off Sharpton in some manner and this whole brouhaha will quietly go away, until the next time.

There always will be a ‘next time’ Imus and his ilk will be out there spouting out vulgarity and the race hustlers like Sharpton and Jackson will be ready to cash in when someone, says something, somebody doesn’t like.
 
Written By: James E. Fish
URL: http://faroutfishfiles.blogspot.com/
Imus has been around every single lap of this mulberry bush.

Go take a look at that album cover.

I didn’t know that.

Here’s something else that I didn’t realize until my brother pointed it out to me this evening:

All ten of the girls on the basketball court in the video that was playing when Imus & crew said what they said are black. You could bloody look it up.

"Racist"? It’s a piss-poor racist who hacks on one team full black women and not the other one.

Sharpton has a new pony to ride on, now, and Imus is toast. He gave up his whole gag when he went earnest, and he’s done for.
 
Written By: Billy Beck
URL: http://www.two—four.net/weblog.php
The majority of blacks are not part of that so called rap culture. And did any body think the team deserved to be talked about that way? It is not the "nappy headed" part of the statement that’s offensive but using "Ho" and if the team would have been all white would they have called them Ho’s. Saying that blacks do it it no justification. I also speak to black bloggers when I think they’re in the wrong. Some of your commenters never miss an opportunity to call black people racist. What does that say?

Proud to be a nappy headed woman.
 
Written By: VRB
URL: http://hathor-sekhmet.blogspot.com
I wonder what Huff Po called all the black liberals when Imus said this on the air....I know not many blacks listen to the I-man due to his "off color" comedy. But he’s not the racist that many now say he is, if you have ever listened to his show you would know he gives everyone a hardtime, whites, hispanics, blacks all of us.... Bottom line is if you do not like his show just change the channel....maybe to a Hip-Hop Gangster station.
 
Written By: stopp700
URL: http://
Carlos Mencia is the best, always makes me laugh....whether he stole some of the jokes or not :) still damn funny. Does he get away with it because he is Hispanic? Perhaps, but he trounces on the Muslims as well, and doesn’t get called on it. No one is allowed to do that!
 
Written By: josh b
URL: http://
Sorry, that’s just flat wrong.
No, it’s not. You may disagree with the premise, but the prima facia evidence that it is correct is the fact that Don Imus is being suspended for 2 weeks (and may end up being fired). That pretty much proves the point.

What I was outlining is the state of racial politics in this country and the expected result of crossing that line. It is hard to believe he wasn’t aware of the possible, if not probable, outcome of such a piece. Pointing out that reality doesn’t mean I agree with the state of racial politics. It is hypocritical to the extreme, but it is still what is.
You cannot do an unscripted comedy show for four hours every day, especially one that takes off on current events, and not occasionally make racially charged jokes. It can’t be done.
That may be, but that doesn’t change the racial paradigm in effect today, incorrect as it may be. If you do it like Imus did, this is the price. Either change the paradigm or be prepared to pay the price.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
And did any body think the team deserved to be talked about that way?
Perhaps not, but the point really should be, why did they care so much about what some fading shock jock had to say? I listened to some of the comments the girls made yesterday and can tell you I would have been sorely disappointed if my daughter reacted the way they did. One girl said Imus took away all the good that had occurred during the season. Excuse me? Are you so weak and dependent that one person’s poor attempt at humor has somehow belittled the incredible run you just had? Please. Grow a spine and get ready for the world. Judge yourself and let people like Imus fade into the sunset.

And don’t get me started on Al and Jesse. What a couple of clowns. Sad and pathetic they are. Someone should read them the parable of the boy who cried wolf. Seriously, they are reacting like this to some stupid, thoughtless comment. What possible reaction will they have if/when someone goes on the air with truly hateful vitriol? Hmmm, let’s see, we got Imus fired. I guess we’ll have to have this guy arrested. Or shot.
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
And did any body think the team deserved to be talked about that way? It is not the "nappy headed" part of the statement that’s offensive but using "Ho"
How long until they sue? Those poor widdle girls had their feelings hurt!

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
PS- Just off media coverage, who seems to have suffered more? The Duke Lacrosse team, or Rutgers girls basketball team?

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
the girls comments make me laugh...Most kids there age use Ho as a common word in their speech..... I just read some where one of the girls said she will be "scarred for life" from this incident.....
 
Written By: stopp700
URL: http://
You can’t compare the lacrosse team and the basket ball team....the person who made the accusations about the Duke Guys was black and that’s acceptable....NOT
 
Written By: stopp700
URL: http://
If you’re like me and would rather chew glass than watch or listen to Imus, you missed this and may even prefer to pass it by now. I just present it as a convenience for those as morbidly curious as myself.

The first thing that comes to my mind on watching this is that comedy is clearly in the eyes and ears of the beholder. What people keep trying to excuse as only a joke impresses me as straight-up mindless twaddle, and by no means the necessary product of a daily four-hour unscripted comedy show — at least not one conducted by people who know and care what they are doing. You don’t just accidentally start referring to people as nappy–headed hos and jiggaboos because you’ve run out of amusing things to say about sports and current events.

The guy is a world-class jerk and it didn’t take this debacle to prove that. Racist? I don’t think so, not based on his idiotic comments. Just stupid. As McQ memorably noted in the other Imus thread, The circus was as predictable as sunrise. How in the world could they have not seen it coming?

I agree 1000% that the basketball players need to grow up and realize they are by no means scarred for life by the dribbling idiocy of some washed-up old geezer. And Sharpton and Jackson deserve, at the very least, every single Tawana Brawley and Hymietown reference they get. But as for Imus and all his pathetic groveling and explaining and protesting and whining, I think that, to say it like the pilot Beck quoted in another thread, it’s time for him to just shut up and die like a man.
 
Written By: Linda Morgan
URL: http://
One of the commenters over at Protein Wisdom found this gem from a Wesleyan Professor (Sorry, no hyperlink):

http://tenured-radical.blogspot.com/2007/04/where-credit-is-due-rutgers-basketball.html
That these male lacrosse players at a private university, almost all of whom are white, have not been repeatedly identified — in jest or seriously — as the semi-criminal youth gang that they appear to be; and that C. Vivian Stringer’s squad of public university scholar-athletes, almost all of whom are black and who have consistently carried themselves with dignity and grace, are slandered on national radio, ought to tell us something about selling race and sex in Amerika today.
 
Written By: Aldo
URL: http://
WOW, now that was some bull....."Semi-criminal youth gang"? I see the author is another liberal in College attire.......
 
Written By: stopp700
URL: http://
Imus made a joke. That’s all it was.
What was the joke?

Is suggesting the girl basketball players are not very feminine really a joke?

In what way?

Maybe it’s not a suspending offense, but can it be called a joke?
 
Written By: Retief
URL: http://
"Saying that blacks do it it no justification"

No, it isn’t, but it shows the hypocrisy and phoniness of a lot of the outrage. Should he be made to apologize and suffer a little punishment? Sure, but let’s not get all puffed up and sanctimonious about the terible trauma inflicted on the helpless and delicate "victims" of this outrage, and the damage he has done to the delicate national psyche.


"Some of your commenters never miss an opportunity to call black people racist. What does that say?"

It says that you are selectively interpreting those comments in the light of your all-white-people-are-racist bias. I could just as well say that you never miss an opportunity to call the (white)commenters here apologists for racism. I believe I have seen several specific black people mentioned here, in addition to black people in general, who have not been called racist. Thomas Sowell and Colin Powell are the only ones I can think of at the moment.

*******************************
"The guy is a world-class jerk and it didn’t take this debacle to prove that."

Amen.

" Racist? I don’t think so, not based on his idiotic comments. Just stupid."

Amen. To be a successful rascist you actually have to think about the other race. He just thought the words sounded cool, and it didn’t even cross his mind that the words would be offensive to the players. People are just objects to him.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://

Carlos Mencia is the best, always makes me laugh....whether he stole some of the jokes or not :) still damn funny. Does he get away with it because he is Hispanic? Perhaps, but he trounces on the Muslims as well, and doesn’t get called on it. No one is allowed to do that!
I have to agree — Mencia is the most refreshing comedian to come around in a long time.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Mencia is no subsititute for Chapelle.
 
Written By: Retief
URL: http://
"Maybe it’s not a suspending offense, but can it be called a joke?"

Humor is like art; almost anything can technically be called art, but is it good art? Art can also be offensive. So, technically Imus’s remarks can be called jokes, but they were offensive and not funny. This is not new territory for him. That is why the "shock" is in "shock jock". Actual humor is not necessary, only offensiveness.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
I agree with both Dale,
Comedy can—and should—occasionally be racially charged.
And Linda Morgan:
What people keep trying to excuse as only a joke impresses me as straight-up mindless twaddle, and by no means the necessary product of a daily four-hour unscripted comedy show — at least not one conducted by people who know and care what they are doing. You don’t just accidentally start referring to people as nappy–headed hos and jiggaboos because you’ve run out of amusing things to say about sports and current events.
Our determination to resist the PC police should not tempt us to defend Imus in this situation. His ugly and offensive comments would arguably be acceptable in the service of some larger satiric/comedic/artistic goal (ideally aimed at more deserving targets), but there doesn’t seem to have been a larger point here. It wasn’t like he was aiming for comedy, and missed the mark. It looks to me like he was tearing these women down in an anachronistically racist way because that is what his audience tunes in to hear.

I wish our society would get to a point of allowing tasteless and ignorant people to spew over the radio, and then refusing to tune in to listen.
 
Written By: Aldo
URL: http://
One thing that is humorous in this mess is the idea of Imus making jokes about other people’s hair.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
timactual, now that was a joke. And a funny one too.
 
Written By: Retief
URL: http://
This is the exact logic behind the chickenhawk argument: You aren’t serving so you can’t support the war. You aren’t black/brown/gay so you can’t use certain words / express certain opinions. Bullsh*t.
 
Written By: SDN
URL: http://

I wish our society would get to a point of allowing tasteless and ignorant people to spew over the radio, and then refusing to tune in to listen.

It’s called Air America.
 
Written By: Ike
URL: http://
"One thing that is humorous in this mess is the idea of Imus making jokes about other people’s hair."
Three words:

"Nappy-Headed Host".

I wish I could claim that, but I can’t.

Sensational.
 
Written By: Billy Beck
URL: http://www.two—four.net/weblog.php

 
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