I'm a talk show host. You know this if you read this blog on a regular basis. I'm not afraid of controversy and have a deep love for the beauty of arguement. I want to say upfront that I have been a big fan of Don Imus for years and his work. His morning show on WFAN has been one of the leaders in our industry and he has done amazing work on air. Last week however, Don Imus, made a bad joke that was totally over of the line. Plain and simple, it was a joke but a great radio man is being destroyed because of what was said.
Don Imus has been suspended for 2 weeks by CBS Radio and MSNBC for comments he made on his show about the Rutgers Women's Basketball team. Imus appeared today on Rev. Al Sharpton's radio show (why he has a show I have no idea) to apologize to the African American community. Of course, Sharpton invited the media in to take pictures of the event. Rev. Al never misses the chance to get his mug in front of a camera. I have never been a fan. I like some of his messages but not so much him personally. Don was contrite and honest about his mistake and spoke openly about the situation he put himself in. Again, he made a mistake.
This story is being blown out of proportion by the US Media who love to report dirt not stories. Don Imus made a racist, horrible joke but should he be fired for what he said? Please. It wasn't like he said that holocaust didn't happen or that Jimmy The Greek was right. He made a joke about the Rutgers' women basketball team that was tasteless but turn on the radio and you'll hear tasteless jokes. It happens ALL the time. Hell, I make bad, tasteless jokes all the time. They might not be racist, but they can be bad or controversial none the less. Fire him? The very question is comical.
What do you want from the guy? His other lung? This is just another example of people who have nothing better to do than bitch about someone who said something that was outrageous. Personally, I love outrageous. I don't love racist but Imus has been making people talk about his show for years. Now, Presidential candidates are being told that they shouldn't appear on his show because it would say that they condone his joke. Hall of Famer Cal Ripken just pulled out of a scheduled interview (still doing my show :) ) because he doesn't want to be associated with the statement. All for what? To show that they aren't racists? That's ridiculous. It. Was. A. Joke! Do you think he meant it?
Don Imus was stupid and out of line. He said he was sorry and now has been suspended. That's enough. Stop the public stoning. Stop the pitch fork waving. The story should die with the CBS Radio suspension. Unfortunately, Anna Nicole is boring and over now. MSNBC, CNN, Fox News etc have to find their next juicy story and this is exactly what they were looking for. I know the NCAAP want him fired and Black Journalist do too but I think in a few days they will calm down. "Nappy Headed Ho's" is what he said. He said it in New York - a town that had Howard Stern on for years who said amazingly offensive things but never was fired for them. The problem is that MSNBC carries the show and it was shown in every town in America. Soccer moms got their sweater vests tangled up over it.
Forget Iraq. Forget investigating the corrupt presidency. Forget finding something worth reporting. No, it will be "Should Don Imus Be Fired?" for the next 4 days until the next stupid story comes up for America to talk about. It's a sad day for the media as we eat one of our own.