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the Imus controversy.. are the big issues being ignored?

I think Imus is an old crank and his show was offensive, but most of all it just got boring. I think it is great that we are having a discussion about race and language.. but kids in the inner city still get terrible education from the public school system for the most part. Partial solutions like charter schools are under huge attack from the teachers unions. Overall it seems like the teachers unions are only out for themselves-- and this is possibly a problem hundreds of times more important than Imus. And of course there are great teachers in the cities, but the unions agenda does not seem to include the kids.

Thu. Apr 12, 6:55pm

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I am tired of the news "creating"'s just a bunch of people talking, and Imus leaving the airwaves is not going to make the world a better place.
This is the new Anna Nicole, OJ, _________ fill in the blank of some meaningless person whose life has become a media obsession) These people really have nothing to do with the real problems in our country. The only good thing I can see coming out of this is 1) a more critical eye towards misogyny in rap lyrics-how can the males in the white community be made to value women of color when the men in their own community treat them so poorly? (and make money off their images of degradation). 2) Black college girls are getting some visability (not enough-,but more than usual) and need to be heard-

Thursday, April 12, 2007, 11:35 PM

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Yes, I'm sick of it all. News has become "infotainment" and people are watching more of it. Finding out what else is really going on it getting harder and harder. You really have to turn to internet sources so you can be selective.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 6:14 AM

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The only thing that really bothers me about the Imus controversy is that the media is focusing on the racism and ignoring the sexism in his remarks.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 9:40 AM

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if people were trying to eradicate the language that he used from the common vernacular, i would have more of an understanding about the uproar. but both of the "offensive" words he used are prevelant in many peoples' vocabularies on a regular basis. this whole ordeal has been a waste of time. if his remarks have helped spark a "new" debate centering on racism in this country, i think he should be applauded, not fired.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 9:49 AM

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I wish CBS and NBC would get a little heat. They let this guy sit on the air for over 30yrs (these types of comments didn't start this week or last week). CBS and NBC gave him a 2 week suspension until sponsors said they were going to pull their ads and then the media outlets fired him. CBS and NBC are dispicable. Imus should have gotten fired years ago.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 10:22 AM

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2 words for you: first amendment.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 10:30 AM

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it was just a bad joke gone wrong

Friday, April 13, 2007, 10:39 AM

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if the words he said are the most offensive comments that people have to put up with, they should consider themslves lucky.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 10:41 AM

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I hate when people blame the teachers in the inner city schools for the problems with inner city schools! Those teachers are overworked and underpaid, working in sometimes unsafe, often unpleaseant conditions. There are shortages of teachers in all major cities. There is nothing glamorous about being a teacher in the inner city, so all of the teachers are there because, on some level, they want to be there.

Teachers unions may not be ideal, but they are set up to protect the teachers, not the students. They cannot be blamed for trying to serve the teachers. That is the purpose of a union, in any field.

The school system would be improved if more good teachers wanted to work there. But it's peoples' preconceptions of all of these racial issues that keep well-educated people from wanting to teach there. Oh, and, the pay is terrible, despite the unions trying to protect the teachers.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 11:50 AM

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how is the above comment relevant to the current discussion?

Friday, April 13, 2007, 11:54 AM

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This is not about teachers- it is about the system and a runway union. Randi Weingarten for example runs the teachers union in NYC- I consider her 1000 times more racist than Don Imus. Imus may have hurt people feelings- but the actions of Weingarten and her union help to prevent many inner city kids a chance to lead a normal life or fulfill their potential. The public school system is broken in most places in the inner city (unless you live in a rich or affluent area, then it works really well). This fact is not in dispute by any rational person. Yet the Union exerts its considerable power to defend the status quo, and resist any effort to change- whatever those proposed changes are. This is the worst form of racism that exists in American today as far as I am concerned.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 11:57 AM

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people are a product of their environment- whether its less fortunate children in the inner-city or Don Imus being promoted as a "shock jock" by CBS. Firing Imus won't make him think differently (at this stage) just as it won't do any good to complain about the teachers (once kids are school aged). Parenting is the root of all the problems. We need to stop complaining about, and pointing fingers at, others. Sure individuals can help influence kids, professionals, men and women alike but at the end of the day we're responsible. If we let it slide it only gets worse as its passed through generations.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 12:25 PM

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11:50am poster here

My comment was directly related to the OP's comment! How could it not be related to the thread?? The OP's post said that inner-city school systems were to blame for racism, not Don Imus. The OP's final statement was a complaint that teachers' unions protect the teachers, not the kids.

Why would a teachers union try to protect the kids? It's not a public service to the community, it's a way to attempt to help the teachers, and the teachers only. Look at any other field that has unions. You don't say, "why don't mining unions change their methods to try and have miners work longer hours, because it'd help the rest of society if we had more coal." (Okay, bad example, b/c there are many people on PT who don't think society would be better off with more coal, but you see my point...)

I'm not saying that I agree with unions. In fact, I do not. I think they create inefficiencies, and they do not allow individuals to excel. But saying that they should, in fact, be protecting students?? That's just not their purpose! They're not meant to be caring individuals, they're expected to act more like defense lawyers, trying to protect people who may or may not really deserve the protection.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 12:26 PM

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Getting OT

There was an interesting article in Newsweek in Feb ny Jonathan Alter. In it he advanced the thought that we need to stop punishing failing schools (as in No Child Left Behind) and start firing failing teachers. He noted that a poor teacher with tenure is committing educational malpratice for 30 or more years.

I am not a teacher but I worked in the school system as a nurse for over 10 years. I was amazed at the LACK of professionalism that was tolerated by principals. Teachers that are chronically late, leaving their classes unattended in the mornings. Testing starts in the 3rd grade and many of those teachers would complain if they received too many advancing 2nd graders for a poor 2nd grade teacher, knowing the uphill battle they would have all year to prepare those students for testing. In many of the schools I worked in, teachers were given bonuses throughout the year. My husband works in the school system as a safety assistant for mentally handicapped students. He hasn't had a raise in 7 years. But if you go to the state capital to ask for funding for ANY program, you are told "budgets are tight and we have to give the teachers their (yearly) raise. Despite the fact that many of the schools in my county are not passing end of year testing.
LegislAtors now if they do not support yearly teacher raises they will be boycotted by the state teachers union on that one point and lawmakers now thye will not be elected. So teachers continue (in NC) to get a raise every year, regardless of performance. I do have friends who work very hard and really teach. Despite the fact that they may have to buy materials for their students, teach children with no interested parents at home, etc. BUT the fact is not all teachers are dedicated and there needs to be some profeessional responsibility.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 3:07 PM

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No one ever called the young white girls who participated in the Girls Gone Wild videos "Hoes". They are looked at as respectable young women, college girls who are just experiencing life or going thru a phase. These video's are no less respectable than rap music or rap video's. Whats insulting is the fact that the women on the basketball team are college students and volenteers and because they are black, that makes every black girl and woman is now a hoe?!?!?

To the 10:39 poster
Imus was not telling a joke, he made a comment, he deserved to be fired he is not creative and his whole show was dry.

To 10:30 poster
1st amendment is not paying the bills over at MSNBC or CBS.

To 9:49 poster
Racism is forever, it exist in every country, city, state, town. The debate will last for 15 min. Races will at best hold hands and sing spirituals and at worse kill each other. This will go on forever I am sure of it. Some people have eradicate the language that he used from thier vernacular, and some people haven't it is thier choice that does not mean that everyone should have to put up with listning to it. There is no justification in him making that comment.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 5:51 PM

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Last poster I don't know where you live or who you talk to about the girls in The Girls Gone Wild videos but I don't ANYONE that considers them respectable young women just experiencing life!!!! Are you kidding me? And are you saying there aren't ANY minorities in ANY of the videos?
Sorry, kind of off topic but I had to address that ridiculous comment.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 6:47 PM

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6:47 poster

My point is there are plenty of skantily dressed and over exposed young girls of many decent on these videos. But none of the young women basketball players.

Friday, April 13, 2007, 7:35 PM

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Imus is jerk. I'm glad he is gone. I hate that the media is making this a commentary about hip hop. The issue is just being deflected. It is not tolerable to make racist comments when you are in a public position. Imus interviews important figures in our society. Yes, you can choose not to listen to him. But what psychological damage does that do to the millions of proud Americans of every color? These stations need to stand up and re-evaluate their value systems. Placing the blame on public school systems is not justifiable as well. That issue is waaaayy more complex. If anyone had the answer to that problem, would be a rich woman or man. Imus' comment is not a joke. With the psychological damage that African Americans just suffered in New Orleans with Katrina, why does Imus feel the need to push the sword in deeper?

Friday, April 13, 2007, 8:00 PM

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if the insult is so far off base from reality, why react so strongly to it? it'd be like someone saying that my father is a pimp. it does not even deserve comment. and as far as people not having to put up with listening to the kind of language Imus uses, change the channel. i've never listened to him, nor would i have known what he said if it were not repeated a thousand times in all forms of media with the purpose of stopping the use of such language. remember when Mayor Nagin called New Orleans a "chocolate city"? it was pretty much swept under the carpet after a few days and he's since been re-elected. the media got a great story out of this whole fiasco. maybe Imus should have confessed to some sort of addiction or signed up for a stint in a worked for many others who said much worse with a much larger audience.

Monday, April 16, 2007, 9:39 AM

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it's the sexism

I heard the entire broadcast and agree with the 9:40 poster that the FIRST issue is not race (not to say that isn't an important issue also) but Imus' open contempt for female athletes.

He's on the air talking about Tennessee, and does he say anything about their season? Their athletic accomplishments? Exciting plays in the game? The coach's extraordinary winning record? No, what strikes him as most important is that the girls are cute and could win without looking "tough."

Well screw that. Winning the NCAA championship isn't about how you look, it's about how hard you work!! And you know all those young women, on both teams, worked their butts off day in and day out to be at the top of their sport. It's shameful that the only thing this supposedly sports-knowledgeable person can focus on is the players' looks and speculative sexual habits.

Monday, April 16, 2007, 10:18 AM

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he's a talk-show host, not a sports authority!! to lay blame on some talk-show host for focusing on women's looks, whether they be women who are also athletes or sales people or politicians or whatever is comical! men AND women perpetrate the idea that women are first to be seen and then heard. if women did not enable people like the "girls gone wild" guy, by performing for him, but instead called him out for his obvious sexist behaviour, this guy would not be where he is financially. and college boys would not encourage the same derogatory behavior from their co-eds with such fervor.

Monday, April 16, 2007, 10:38 AM

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10:38- you have to be careful with your generalizations. While I agree that Imus is an entertainer and has historically acted in this manner in order to get a rise from his audience (postitive or otherwise), it is unrealistic to assume that all women are topless spring-breakers. The Rutgers women were playing basketball (and very well at that) and did nothing to warrant such a crude comment. Imus and CBS and NBC were wrong on a number of levels: First of all in Imus's comments, but also in promoting, hosting, supporting and reacting.

Monday, April 16, 2007, 11:36 AM

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i'm not generalizing, i'm talking specifically about the girls in the ...gone wild videos and how they themselves contribute to the sexist view of women. they are directly affecting the way men see college-age women, whether the women in question have participated in such videos or not. ads for these videos run rampant on tv after about 11pm, along with women in lingerie, vamping around their beds asking for lonely men to call them. the sexism completely supercedes any accomplishments that (academic/athletic) women achieve. even in politics: hilary clinton's appearance is scrutinized much more than her male counterparts. my point is that the image of sexually irresponsible women really appeals to some men and Imus must be one of them. he is not THE perpetrator of such images, but merely A perpetrator. and he did not exclusively target the rutger's women, he blasts and insults people in every walk of life. if more women had in the past stood up to the "sex-sells" disaster that is termed "entertainment" a bit sooner instead of becoming participants, the rutger's women may have only had to fight it out on the b-ball court.

Monday, April 16, 2007, 12:01 PM

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i watched an episode last night of a show called "girlfriends" which is about 4 young, black, professional women. in one scene, one of the characters calls the other a "skanky ho." this show should be taken off the air.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007, 3:05 PM

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The thing that pisses me off most about Imus is that they targeted him. What about how Rush Limbaugh accused Michael J. Fox of faking his disease and actually did an IMPRESSION of him shaking? What about how Ann Coulter called John Edwards a f--got and got away with it?? Why are we all of a sudden outraged about Imus and those other incidents I mentioned got a minor flap?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007, 3:39 PM

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Honestly sexism is ignored because people don't want to admit it still exists, and is prevalent.

Sunday, December 09, 2007, 2:44 AM

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What is so sad is how people tried to justify this kind of attitude with the First amendment. Honestly, most people don't seem to realize that the First Amendment wasn't made so you could say what-ever you wanted without any kind of repressions. No, it as meant so one could openly discuss views, not merely insult other people. Using it in a manner to say you can insult, downgrade, or verbally attack is an excuse that insults the very complexities of the ideas which our government was founded.

Sunday, December 09, 2007, 2:47 AM

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People are insulted in just about every T.V. show out there, so it's not just an "Imus" thing, it's a sociatal thing. We tolerate this and even laugh at (and support with our dollars) these shows, so if anyone wants to do finger pointing they should look at what THEY watch and vote with their conscience. You can't like watching Desparate Housewives, which greatly harms the way people think about women and hang Imus. It's the same thing, different venue.

And as far as the school system goes, instead of complaining about it, do something about it. Get involved with your school. Better yet, get involved with your kids! The vast majority of parents don't even know what goes on in their childrens' schools; never darken the door unless it's a conference, have no idea who's on the school board and what their views are etc. I agree with the above poster, this is not a school problem, it's a parent problem.

Monday, December 10, 2007, 1:19 PM

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