Friday, April 13, 2007

Imus is Just the Beginning

Conservatives will be gratified at the news that Don Imus - who saved Bill Clinton's Presidential candidacy, vilified Bush and Cheney on a daily basis, and generally gave dozens of Democratic politicians a soapbox to preach their message to white men - has been fired. For better or worse, his comments seem to have ignited a national dialogue over the perjoratives we use for women generally - and african-american women in particular - that are deemed acceptable for some, but not others.

Conservatives might think that the logical next topic of discussion would be the hip-hop culture that promotes the acceptance of vile terms to describe women. But rest assured, that's not the next step that liberals have in mind. Their goal is to start getting conservative talk radio hosts knocked off the air. The first target might well be Michael Savage:

For decades, on the radio, Don Imus sowed the winds of insult, hatred and racism. And this week — after one ugly comment that shocked an entire nation — he finally reaped the whirlwind.

Good for NBC for getting his poison off the air. The only question is: Why’d it take them so long? The Rutgers basketball champions weren’t the first women, blacks or Jews he’d offended.

Imus insisted that he and his producers were just trying to be funny. But it wasn’t funny when he called Gwen Ifill a White House “cleaning lady.” It wasn’t funny when he called the “Jewish management” of CBS a bunch of “money-grubbing bastards.” It wasn’t funny when Imus producer Bernard McGuirk said that “bitch” Hillary Clinton would have “cornrows and gold teeth before this fight with Obama is over.”

Yet MSNBC allowed Imus to get away with all that and more — until he picked on the wrong target: a talented group of young women, and their coach, who represent the best of America. And, of course, until sponsors began to cancel their advertising.

As reprehensible as Imus’s comments were, however, the sad fact is: He’s not the worst. There are far more hateful voices on the air. Like Michael Savage, a nationally syndicated talk show host, who called one listener a “Sodomite” and told him to “get AIDS and die.”

So the sacking of Don Imus is not the end of cleaning up the airwaves; it’s only a good beginning. Don Imus is gone. Next: Fire Michael Savage!

As far as Michael Savage goes, I don't listen to him, and I wouldn't miss him if his show ended. I'm sure Press is right in asserting he's said some highly offensive things.

But you know where this is headed. There will soon be calls for the dismissal of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and other mainstream conservative talk show hosts. The Left has contended for years that these radio institutions are purveyors of hatred. Prepare to hear a lot more of that in the near future.

Update: A lot more over here.

1 comment:

Philo-Junius said...

I've long been of the opinion that the Michael Savage routine portrayed on radio by Mr. Weiner is a Trust Operation designed simultaneously to enrich Mr. Weiner and to discredit casual conservatives generally by rallying them to morally repugnant, politically nonviable and philosophically abortive demagoguery, in much the same way that Sasha Cohen uses his Borat "throw the Jew down the well" schtick to tar (or expose, depending on one's interpretation) more or less ordinary people as closet antisemites.

I frankly think his purported conversion was mere opportunism of the most cynical variety.