Friday, April 13, 2007

Big Freakin News: Don Imus Fired!
But What Was The Real Reason? we never though it would happen. With the amount of "outrageous reactions" from many publicity-seeking newsmakers, it is no surprise that Don Imus, host of the Imus In The Morning radio program was fired for his comments about the Rutger's Women's Basketball team. CBS policy (and yes I work for them) states that those type of racist remarks are unacceptable and may result in termination.

So I guess my company followed their Statement of Conduct Policy. And I am assuming that NBC did also. Each of these company's, in an effort to ward off more of the political embarassment issued statements regarding the firing of Mr. Imus for using the word "nappyhead." My Google search for nappyhead+don imus gave me about 11,800 for results. And what bugs me about all this is....we'll get to that in a moment. First here is the "official stances":

Effective immediately, MSNBC will no longer simulcast the "Imus in the Morning" radio program. This decision comes as a result of an ongoing review process, which initially included the announcement of a suspension. It also takes into account many conversations with our own employees. What matters to us most is that the men and women of NBC Universal have confidence in the values we have set for this company. This is the only decision that makes that possible. Once again, we apologize to the women of the Rutgers basketball team and to our viewers. We deeply regret the pain this incident has caused.

—Statement from NBC News

CBS today announced its decision to cease broadcasting the Imus in the Morning radio program, effective immediately, on a permanent basis.

“From the outset, I believe all of us have been deeply upset and revulsed by the statements that were made on our air about the young women who represented Rutgers University in the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship with such class, energy and talent,” said CBS President and Chief Executive Officer Leslie Moonves, in announcing the decision. “Those who have spoken with us the last few days represent people of goodwill from all segments of our society – all races, economic groups, men and women alike. In our meetings with concerned groups, there has been much discussion of the effect language like this has on our young people, particularly young women of color trying to make their way in this society. That consideration has weighed most heavily on our minds as we made our decision, as have the many emails, phone calls and personal discussions we have had with our colleagues across the CBS Corporation and our many other constituencies.”

Moonves concluded: “I want to thank all those who came to see us to express their views. We are now presented with a significant opportunity to expand on our record on issues of diversity, race and gender. We intend to seize that opportunity as we move forward together.

—Statement from CBS Radio

Now, in his official published statement, and statements that I have heard on every media outlet in the world, Mr. Imus apologized over and over for what he said. His statement from his radio show last Friday, after this whole thing went down was, "Want to take a moment to apologize for an insensitive and ill-conceived remark we made the other morning regarding the Rutgers women's basketball team. It was completely inappropriate, and we can understand why people were offended. Our characterization was thoughtless and stupid, and we are sorry."

What Don Imus did here wasn't out of his character. I grew up listening to him on WNBC in New York and I learned many "racial words" from his show, and I even learned a few from the All in the Family TV show where Archie Bunker had a few choice ones to say about the Jeffersons. So who is Don Imus? Not that anyone cares but here is a brief bio on him from the WFAN website...then we'll get to the point. (I made it small...skip it fit you like)

Don Imus and his brother Fred both claim to have had parents, a mother and a father. I have never seen them. Have you? As nearly as the date can be fixed, Don’s birth – however it occurred – took place in the late 18-hundreds making him a contemporary of such noted Americans as Ulysses S. Grant and Grover Cleveland…all U.S. Presidents.

Don spent the normal twelve years in public school and emerged with no formal education…a product of automatic social promotion. He graduated with no honors and no skills. Requiring neither, a broadcasting career seemed a natural for the young Imus and advancements came quickly.

Now widely acclaimed, Imus has been featured on tons of TV and Radio shows, and of particular note, Larry King, in shameless, mutual ass-kissing marathons. In addition, Don has been, and continues to be, a subject of countless, pointless print articles. Time magazine once named Don one of the 25 most influential people in America.

Imus is also a best-selling author and an accomplished amateur photographer. His novel, “God’s Other Son,î spent three months on the New York Times best-seller list driven there by listeners to his program who bought the @#$#%&# thing to get him to shut up about it. In September of 1996, the Imus radio program began being simulcast live on cable network MSNBC for reasons never made clear.

Since 1990, Imus has headlined a radiothon with New York radio station WFAN that has raised over 50-million dollars to benefit the Tomorrows Children’s Fund, the CJ Foundation for SIDS, and the Imus Ranch for kids with cancer. Imus has received too many plaques, trophies and pieces of walnut with crystal @#$@ stuck on them to mention. We won’t. He is a member of the Emerson Radio Hall of Fame, the National Broadcasters Hall of Fame, the Stolichnaya and Marlboro Halls of Fame, and, if there is a God, will soon be a permanent exhibit at the Duke University School of Medicine’s Hall of Cadavers where his lungs will be featured in a display designed to permanently traumatize children.

Now let's look at the problem. Was it what he said? Who he said it to? Or maybe the fact that the political pressure from media and our newsmakers made a bigger deal than this really needed to be. I did some research and found some VERY interesting facts about some of the words Mr. Imus used in his famed "derogatory comments."

I went to the website and found only 4 definitions for the word "nappyhead." It surprised me that there were only 4 on their website when the other word, which I personally found more offensive and had 92 definitons with much stronger negative position. But first, let's take a look at the definition for "Nappyhead."

nappy head
A person who behaves like a kid!!! Kiddish behaviour!!!

Tom is such a nappy head he starting crying when questioned by the teacher.
tags: kiddo bachcha moron looser babyface

I then went on to look to see where and what the word Nappyhead was used for and where it appeared on the net. I found that Nappyhead is a Detox website, the name for a 30-year-old guy from Forth Worth, Texas, A Urban Style Record Company, and the most shocking - A Baby Clothing Manufacturer in London, England. On their website it said, "No, it's not an insult! Nappy Head are a baby slogan clothing manufacturer, however they also stock items for adults - so mums and dads can treat themselves as well. Nappy Head: "Baby Clothes with a difference. Established in 2002, Nappy Head® produces a distinct range of high quality cool slogan/graphic garments for babies, toddlers and parents.

Now lets look at the more offensive word in my opinion and this come to us again from the Urban Dictionary which had 92 definitions - some so rude and vulgar that I would not and could not print here. So let's take a look at that word:

A whore. A woman who uses her body, or gives the impression that her mark can be intimate with her, for material gain or to boost her own ego.

She says she will only have sex with short, fat or bald men if they compensate her with expensive gifts. She's a just a typical, run of the mill 'ho.

(n) A prostitute. Shorthand for the word whore. This word originated from prostitutes who trick at hotels. In some cases people refer to them as sluts but what makes it different is that hoes get paid for what they do. (pl n) Hoes.

Look at that ho, she's just made about $500 at the telly the other day.

Do you see my point? I think the word "Ho" is a wee bit more offensive than "Nappyhead." I understand that it's more of whom it was said to than what was said. But I've heard nothing but comments from people about how offensive the word "nappyhead" is. I think being called a whore, slut or any of those would make any woman pretty pissed off.

I'm glad that some of the girls on the Rutger's team had intelligent things to say and I hope they can confront Mr. Imus in their private meeting and find out what it was all about. He has and will apologize to them. I hope our media doesn't try to hone in on that important time of healing for these girls. I hope that nobody tapes it or has a cell phone going to record it. And most of all, I hope that Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson aren't there. They don't need any more press thanthey have already gotten. This is a time for the girls of Rutger's to understand and listen to Mr. Imus' apology.

So what's the bottom line. It's done. Over. Put a fork in it. CBS & NBC did what they had to whether out of company policy or political pressure. Mr. Imus has and will continue to apologize. And that's a good thing. We've got to realize that celebrities and entertainers like Imus, Mel Gibson and Michael What's-his-name from Seinfeld are just that...entertainers. They do not represent the opinions of the entire country. They do not set policy on how one race treats another. I love my Black friends, Asian friends, Hispanic friends and the list goes on.

Overcoming racism is up to us. Not the media, political newsmakers or Presidential candidates. But as always, that's my opinion, I could be wrong!