Does America need Don Imus?

Imusonair.comShock jock Don Imus is back in the news for making what most sensible people believe to be a racist remark on his WABC radio show.

Imus made national headlines, when he made some racist comments about the Rutgers women’s basketball team last year, which subsequently led to his termination from WFAN and MSNBC.

This time, Imus’ statement was less specific, but the interpretation is still quite transparent.

According to a Daily News article:

On Monday’s show, sportscaster Warner Wolf was talking about how (NFL player Adam) Jones had been suspended for a season and arrested six times.

“What color is he?” asked Imus.

“He’s African-American,” said Wolf.

“Well, there you go,” said Imus. “Now we know.”

In his own defense, Imus says the statment was meant to suggest that African-Americans are wrongly targeted by police because of their race.  Imus didn’t make this clarification on his show, though. 

What Imus said last year was unconscionable and his firing was the right move.  Many people believe Imus should never have been given a second chance.

After this recent remark, is there any other conclusion than to presume that Don Imus is indeed a racist?

And, in a society trying desperately to overcome centuries of prejudice, do we really need a guy  like Imus on the air?

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4 Comments on “Does America need Don Imus?”

  1. M Says:

    Why do you care? If you don’t listen to his show, then it doesn’t matter to you. If you do listen, then stop if your sensitive ears are offended. People should be able to say what they want without race baiters and white guilters calling for their job.
    If people were more honest about race, perhaps that might help overcome “centuries of prejudice”. Instead, any comment on race, whether a joke or serious, is deemed racist. The word “racist” is so overused.

  2. jack rogers Says:

    Anyone who suggests that someone is guilty, based solely on his skin color, is a racist, pure and simple — no matter how overused the word may be.

    I’ve never listened to more than 10 seconds of Imus, and that was just when I happened to turn on a local affiliate playing his ridiculous drivel.

    Also, freedom of speech does not apply to people like Imus. The media has a responsibility to report facts and to avoid generalities that slander entire races of people, even if it is opinion.

    I find your use of the slang, “race baiters” and “white guilters” offensive, too. I’m sure you’re a huge Imus fan. Since you are not a celebrity, though, you can get away with it.

  3. M Says:

    I’ve never once listed to the Imus show. I don’t know much of anything about him. I just don’t understand why people (specifically your blog in this case) feel so outraged by comments from a radio host they never heard before…that is until someone from the news media said you should be offended. I’m also curios what other groups of people “freedom of speech does not apply to” as you say. That is quite an un-democratic / un-American thing to say. Last time I checked everyone had the freedom to speak their mind regardless of their job.

    Why not let the marketplace dictate what can be said on the media airwaves? This seems like a better alternative to special interest groups and offended bloggers dictating what can an can’t be joked about on radio/tv/internet.

    What is offensive about “race baiter” and “white guilt”? Are you suggesting people with these qualities do not exist? Think Al Sharpton and the recently popular Father Pfleger. Those two media hounds offend me every time I see them on TV, but I’m not calling for their job or complaining to the media that I see them. I just change the channel. Its pretty simple.

  4. jack rogers Says:

    Your points are well taken, especially about Al Sharpton. If you are at all familiar with my blog, as you appear to be, you know I’m about as far to the left as you can get.

    I’m a firm believer in freedom of speech. I’m not saying people like Imus don’t have it; I’m only suggesting that people in the media have a greater responsibility when it comes to commenting on hot-button issues and on people. This is why there are slander laws.

    Your rebuttal, however, is a good one. I hope to hear from you again.

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