IT’S TIME TO SAY GOOD-BYE TO IMUS

By Eileen McGann on April 10, 2007

It’s time for Imus to go. NBC and CBS should fire him.

He’s not funny.

He’s a mean-spirited racist.

His trademark ‘humor’ is offensive and demeaning to women, minorities, gays, Jews, Catholics, Arabs, and everyone else who he targets – and he shouldn’t be given a national platform to debase people because of their religion, gender, sexual preference, or national origin.

And that’s exactly what he does.

His recent hateful – and hurtful – comments about the young women superstars on the Rutgers basketball team who went all the way to the NCAA were just part of a long and steady pattern of revolting remarks. Calling the talented young team members “nappy headed hos” was way over the top – even for Imus and his sidekicks, especially his racist producer, Bernard McGuirk. This wasn’t any mistake or slip of the tongue. Imus has been deliberately degrading people for decades and he thinks it’s okay as long as he calls it comedy.

NBC and CBS should get rid of him for good. A two week suspension is meaningless. He’ll be right back with his ethnic and religious slurs.

This isn’t about political correctness. It’s about human decency.

How must those girls feel? After reaching for the stars and almost catching them, they found themselves ridiculed on national radio and television. Why, they must ask? Why knock us down at our moment of success?

And now that he’s been soundly criticized, he wants to apologize. Sort of. He’s done that before. Sort of. To him, an apology is just a bunch of words you say to get past an annoying situation.

This certainly isn’t the first time that he’s crossed the line with racist and hateful comments, but the crudeness and meanness of the attacks on the Rutgers girls takes one’s breath away.

IMUS’ HISTORY OF RACISM

In 1997, Imus told a staffer off camera at 60 Minutes that McGuirk was hired “to do nigger jokes.” When Mike Wallace questioned him about the statement on the air, he initially denied it, but later admitted it and said that he wouldn’t apologize for it.

He’s still at it.

In 2001, Imus promised Clarence Page- on the air – that he would cease all offensive comments about black athletes. So much for his promises.

His favorite targets are people of color, but Jews are high up on his hit list, too.

He’s called basketball player Shaquille O’Neal “a carjacker in shorts.”

In 2004, NBC issues an apology for offensive remarks made by Imus about Palestinians. Calling them “stinking animals,” he suggested that they all should be killed.

He called a Mexican tennis player “a dishwasher”and referred to distinguished Afro-American journalist Gwen Ifill as “the cleaning lady.”

Indian men’s doubles tennis players were dubbed “Gunga Din and Sambo”

After Hillary Clinton spoke with a black accent in Selma, Imus predicted that she’d have “cornrows and gold teeth”before the fight with Obama was over.

The African-American wife of former Secretary of Defense William Cohen was called “a big-haired ho” by Imus.

He called Washington Post journalist Howard Kurtz a “boner-nosed beanie-wearing little Jew boy.”

And he described the “Jewish management” of CBS as “beanie wearing money-grubbing bastards.”

But he insults Catholics, too. On Good Friday, the holiest day of the year, Imus aired a song that rhythmed the word Resurrection with erection. Very funny, isn’t he?

Even people with disabilities are not immune from him. Imus went after Janet Reno’s Parkinson’s Disease. There’s nothing too low for him.

He has a a long and established history of racist, misogynistic, and anti-Semitic remarks- and it’s time to stop them.

But, as revolting as he is, it is unlikely that NBC and CBS will fire him. So there’s two more things that anyone who is disgusted by Imus can do: tell NBC and CBS what you think and contact the politicians and journalists who frequent his show and never say a word about his unacceptable behavior.

Vote on this issue at www.vote.com and an email will be sent to Imus, CBS, and NBC. (Imus’ Racist Remarks: Is it Time for NBC and CBS to Fire him?)

POLITICIANS AND JOURNALISTS WHO APPEAR ON IMUS

Imus is able to attract a wide-range of prominent politicians and journalists to constantly appear on his show. But, it seems that none of them have ever been offended by the racist and anti-women remarks regularly made by Imus and his gang. Only veteran political commentator Jeff Greenfield has ever questioned Imus about criticisms claiming that some of the content of the show is racist. http://reclaimthemedia.org/media_literacy_bias/why_does_tim_russert_associate=5094

Today, Greenfield blamed himself and other guests, saying that”part of the blame rests with the fact that politicians and political analysts have let Imus’s “sophomoric” remarks pass without challenge for so many years.”

But many of his other famous guests have staunchly defended Imus. James Carville, speaking on CNN and the Today Show, empathized with the pain that Imus and his wife must be feeling and promised to go back on the show. No mention of the pain and humiliation that the girls and their families endured. That’s not important! No, this is all about Imus. In typical Carville-speak, he told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer: “He said a really bad thing, he didn’t do a really bad thing.”

Apparently, Carville sees a distinction.

According to Carville, Imus’ charitable work should more than compensate for any unacceptable behavior.

Hey, James, it’s the racism, misogynism, and anti-semitism – not the charity, stupid!

Senator John McCain, another frequent visitor, also plans to go back on the show and sees Imus’apology as all that is needed. He believes in redemption! (how many redemptions, Senator?)

But maybe some of the other regulars can be persuaded to either refuse to appear on the show or to refuse to condone offensive conversations and skits on the Imus show. It’s worth a try.

There are a lot of big names appearing on the show — many of them grateful for Imus pushing their books.

Senator Chris Dodd actually announced his plan to run for president on the Imus in the Morning Show. Citing his fourteen years of appearing on the show, Dodd said he chose that venue because Imus gave him a full twenty minutes on the air, while CBS would only give him three. Dodd is no racist and should stay off the show.

Others seen on the show include Mitt Romney, Senators Joe Biden, Clair McCashell, Chuck Schumer, historian Michael Bechless, Harold Ford, Tim Russert, Jonathan Alter, Mike Barnacle, Bob Schieffer, David Gregory, David Brooks, Chris Matthews, Brian Williams, Howard Fineman, Bill Bradley, Jim Cramer, Evan Thomas, Tom Friedman, Lou Dobbs, Jonathan Alter, and Doris Kearns Goodwin.

Not one of them has ever criticized Imus. It’s time to start.

Let them know how you feel. These politicians and journalists – even those at NBC – should not appear on the Imus Show.

And, the presidential candidates should definitely not agree to be guests and implicitly endorse the rantings of Imus. That’s a must!

It’s really time to get completely rid of Imus. But failing that, its time to leave him alone to enjoy his hateful tirades by himself.

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Please leave a comment below - I would love to hear what you think! Thanks, Dick
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