/> a mother's heart » Blog Archive » the don imus flap

I’ll admit it: I’m no fan of Don Imus.

I tried watching the simulcast of his show many years ago and turned it off in utter boredom. I thought the guy was entirely irrelevant and snobbish. And old, which made him truly incompatible with me…not that I’m prejudiced against those with more mileage than I have, but he was talking about things that simply didn’t relate to my life.

So when I heard that Imus made the ultimate of verbal mis-steps, I wasn’t terribly concerned or surprised. I was a bit shocked that it was such big news–I didn’t think that Imus had that big an audience. And I was disgusted at his words, but not speaking like that, I also wasn’t aware how prevalent that language is in popular (rap) culture and music.

What did ultimately surprise me, though, was that Imus was canned. He has been one of the stalwarts of the liberal media, even without a massive audience at his beck & call. And yet his cohorts in the belief system burned him at the stake. Which truly did raise my eyebrows. I thought he’d get smacked on the hand and go back in to obscurity as a has-been radio shock-jock. I certainly calculated that wrong.

And I think that’s where I *did* go wrong. The calculation-part. Imus was fine as long as he was labouring away in obscurity and maintaining what money he did bring CBS. But when sponsors began to pull out and his ignorance and stupidity began to cost the network cash, I guess they counted their pluses and minuses and Imus came up in the “negative” column.

I honestly think the best viewpoint on the whole mess comes from Jason Whitlock, who writes for the Kansas City Star. You can read his column here. Whitlock’s point is those making noise over Imus have distracted from the real problem that minorities face in American culture today; namely, that of self-destructiveness. Imus’ language isn’t new–it became part of the coarse vernacular when thugs and criminals took over the rap music scene and became the people that kids and young adults look up to. Whitlock’s voice isn’t the loudest in the arena, but he does echo other well-known and well-placed black leaders like Bill Cosby who is calling parents and young people to more than just low expectations they might otherwise have for themselves. It’s a good read and worth the expenditure of time..

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