Thursday, April 12, 2007

Wow I was totally wrong

So now that Imus has been fired and I was wrong that Al Sharpton crying about something wouldn't yield such ludicrous results, I only miss Imus despite the fact that I haven't listened to his show in awhile (although I liked it) and hate Al Sharpton more than I did on Tuesday.

When my grandma told him that "he [is] good for his people" at a Chinese restaurant 2 years ago (yes she's an old timer but not a racist, maybe he shoulda made a big stink about her) I never thought that I'd ever care so much about what "good" things he does for his people, as in cancel offensive white men on the radio, which apparently is good for his people. Is canceling the Kings of Comedy, Dave Chappelle, etc... good for white people?

Blacks may have a long history of suffering and discrimination that makes the use of black humor more sensitive than the use of white humor, but when is the last time that they weren't accused of self-deprecating humor, or even worse, self-deprecating language with no intent for humor? And when is the last time that self-deprecating humor was relegated to only those who are of the clan being made fun of, thus rendering the word "self" to be nothing but a term with no real meaning? And if so, why the fuck is everyone so goddam sensitive? Self-deprecating humor does result in other people picking up on it and making it everyone-deprecating humor, and that shouldn't be a surprise to anyone.

I want a guarantee from Big Al that he has never used the words nappy or ho, and truthfully I wouldn't believe him even if he made one. Bob Herbert of the NYTimes was pissed off by Imus, but at least he wrote about it in a historical context noting that Imus has finally gone too far, not to mention the fact that he's not pretending like Imus directly insulted him, as it was the Rutger's women's basketball team that his comments were directed at. Not only is Bob a little more credible, but his one editorial of being fed up with Imus is a follow up to several more articles about how blacks need to take some credit for negative stereotypes and language that they help perpetuate to a greater extent than someone like Imus ever has. When's the last time Big Al took any brunt of the blame or pointed his finger at his "people that he is good for?"

More importantly, Imus noted this morning that perhaps Big Al should apologize to the Duke lacrosse players for having paraded around North Carolina like the devil himself became triplets and fake raped a psychotic lady, but because she was black and Al was once again menstruating, he'll never ever admit that mistakes were made (even the Decider used that line once). Kinda reminds me of the Tawana Brawley rape case as well, in which he trumpeted racism, strove for personal gain, and ended up being completely wrong without ever apologizing.

As much as the guy bugs me, let's get on to those who egg him on, ie. everyone who listened to him with open ears this week and reacted to Big Al's pressure, which has culminated with Les Moonves saying that, "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.”

Seriously, I think there is nothing wrong with saying "Black" instead of "African-American" and I certainly hate the idea of being PC, but this guy just used the word "colored" when trying to excoriate and fire Imus for making a racist comment. Imus said something so let's get pissed at him and completely disregard what he said and how I might also be implicated in it! If people were actually trying to be progressive and make some good of this whole situation, then perhaps we should all take a step back and address the idea of institutional racism, which to me is glaringly obvious when the chairman of CBS uses the word "colored," a throwback word to the days of Jim Crow and segregated water fountains...But why would we want to do that? Big Al after all got his kill and skinned him alive, why would he actually try and make this an issue that's larger than just himself?

Not only are Les Moonves and so many others missing the point here, but caving to pressure is too light a term to characterize them, considering that they made their decisions to suspend Imus and then totally changed it up. This all because they are scared of Al Sharpton despite the fact that they are too ignorant to actually understand the situation or have a PR doctor read their fucking statements before making them? I say we start a "get Al off the air" pledge drive.

Imus, may your show RIP. Is it possible that you'll get a fresh start on satellite with your nemesis Howard Stern? It'd be nice to see them team up in the name of free speech and telling people to calm the hell down.


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