Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Morning Edition - 4/11/07 - 4/12/07

Lesson exercise your first amendment rights to speak your mind and your mind contains some racially charged statements, you should be sure that your statements don't affect the ONE unforgiving color in America - GREEN. After several large advertisers began their exodus from the Don Imus in The Morning Show, executives at MSNBC felt they could no longer carry Imus. CBS' decision is still pending. See, in America, it's not what you say that will establish your success or failure; it is who will stand by you when all is said and done.

Say Whatever; Jigaboo, Wannabe
Don Imus and his producer Bernard McGuirk are in hot water for the comments they made regarding the Rutgers University Basketball team following their game with Tennessee. Apparently, Imus and McGuirk felt the game resembled a scene from the Spike Lee movie School Daze and that the Rutgers team could be seen as the Jigaboos, while the primarily light-skinned Tennessee team apparently represented the Wannabees. The exact reference to the Rutgers team by Imus was that they are “Nappy-headed ho’s.” Two days after the uproar, Imus apologized, but faces a two-week suspension beginning Monday, April 16. Many are calling for MSNBC, the station who carries Don Imus in the Morning, to fire Imus and McGuirk. Strangely, this isn’t the first time Imus and his side-kick have stepped across racial lines with inappropriate comments. On March 6, McGuirk is said to have mentioned that Hilary Rodham Clinton was trying to “sound black” when addressing a March 4, Selma, Alabama Bloody Sunday commemorative ceremony. McGuirk said that by the end of the presidential race between Senator Barrack Obama and Clinton, Clinton would be seen wearing cornrows and sporting gold teeth. He even went on to say that we should look forward to Clinton giving hand signs to gang members from the crips during her speeches. True, no one needs to tune-in to listen to the inflammatory remarks, but it doesn’t mean that bigoted, racially motivated and stereotypical remarks can be blurted from such a public forum unchecked. So far, two major advertisers have pulled their endorsements from the Imus in the Morning Show – one being Procter and Gamble.

On Blast

Should comments like those from Don Imus and Bernard McGuirk be allowed on nationally syndicated and well endorsed radio shows? Are we infringing on the first amendment rights of others if we ask that a radio talk show host and his producer are fired for speaking their mind? Are there minority radio talk show hosts guilty of comments that are similar or equal to those of Imus and McGuirk, but we feel their comments should be overlooked or excused simply because of a perceived minority privilege to speak against the alleged oppressors in America?

Keep passin’ the open windows…


caspar608 said...

First Ms. Jones of NY's Hot 97.1 is an angry dirty woman who should have been fired a long time ago for the disparaging remarks she makes about EVERYONE. She is a pig, going so far as making a comedic skit about the Tsunami....
she is just as bad as Imus, anyway, although I found his remarks to be ignorant he does have First AMendment rights to say just about anything....just like these rappers out here who objectify and degrade sisters in their videos and lyrics. WHat difference does it make really? WHen it all comes down to it, its ugly behavior. It should be abolished....but as long as people are only screaming about what ignorant white people are doing, while they scoff at Bill Cosbys message about raising black children properly....well, things are never going to change. Does anyone remember Bill Cosbys statements about the state of the black community? How children run around calling each other ni--er? What difference does it make really? Its all stupid.
Imus should be fired because he sucks.
The more black folks give a damn about what white people think about them - their hair, their color etc - the less progress will be made. Do you, do it right, do it well and everyone can go to hell.

caspar608 said...

the part that killed me and made me hysterical was when he was on Sharptons show and he said "you people" and they said Sharpton and a caller on the line were trying to "jive" him....that was hilarious.....

and one of the young ladies on the basketball teamed talked about how she would be scarred for life???? scarred for life by words made by a decrepit old honky? is she kidding me? does she even realize the struggles of women who came before her who were raped by slave owners, whose children were ripped from them and sold into slavery....those who marched and were hosed with firehouses and had dogs attack them during peaceful protests. One would think a female ball player would have harder skin and just say he was a jackass....but, hey, you got the lights camera action on you now so make sure you say something really weak and victimized rather than say something powerful like "who is Don Imus?"
and that whole good and bad hair see if I care good and bad hair thing is still in full effect with the sisters so don't front....please.
India Arie said it yourself. Its the best forcefield we got folks.

Leniere said...

As always, you pose some really good questions.

As I stated on my blog (!), the future of Imus' employment is up to the folks who sign his checks. We do have a right to free speech, but free speech has consequences. If you pay someone and their actions cost you money, then it makes sense that you would fire them. If he gets fired WFAN will couch it in the departure of advertising dollars, and not what he said. You can't fire someone because of their beliefs...legally at least, most employers would not say they fired someone because of what they believe--even if that was the reason.

The public can take action by leaning on the advertisers funding the television and radio shows that don't reflect their interests.

This situation brings to mind another situation (not as severe) featuring Bronx bred vocal powerhouse Jennifer Lopez. On a song featuring Ja Rule (whatever happened to her?) La Lopez used the n-word. I've heard other Puerto Rican New Yorkers use this word as well. I got tons of emails asking me to show up at a protest that was to occur during her outdoor performance on one of those morning shows.

We do give a free pass to others who regularly use the terms that Imus used on his show. I think it's easier to point the finger at people who are different than it is to look at ourselves.

Tales from a Juggernaut said...

I really have problems with the consistency. If every time people come up with bigoted nonsense we fire them, then...shouldn't a lot more people be getting fired?

Honestly, I don't see why it's much of a legal thing at all-- it's a money thing. If he's saying this sort of garbage, then people who don't like it[me included] should be targeting his sponsors and getting people to boycott his show.

I also just feel as if some people are really thin-skinned and inconsistent.

Darius T. Williams said...

So yea - I think that Imus can say what he wants. It's America where there's freedom of speech and freedom of press...can't do a thing about it. Are there nicer things to say, sure? But how many times to comedians of color crack on other races and we fall completely out at the jokes? Or how many stereotypes do we make about others and we're all in agreement? I think he shouldn't have said it - but, he shouldn't be punished either.

That Dude Right There said...

I was gonna comment, but I think that i'll post my own blog about it.

WhozHe said...

I am glad he was fired. And your point about the color "green" is so true. He's been a bigot for years, and his off color jokes and racist/sexist humor is what brought him to MSNBC and why they agreed to pay him the money. Ironically it was that very same style of insulting humor that cost him his job.