Friday, April 13, 2007

What really matters?

Okay, I am now officially more fed up with hearing news media braying like a bunch of jackasses over the utterings of Don Imus than I was with hearing them doing so over the life and death of Anna Nicole Smith.

It is becoming increasingly difficult to take Keith Olbermann seriously. On Wednesday evening his "news" show (I didn’t formerly put the word "news" in quotes) spent an agonizing thirty minutes of "profound" discussion and punditry on the subject of Don Imus, and on Thursday that was reduced to a mere ( mere ) twenty-five minutes.

I have listened to families of wild pigs in the Arizona desert that sounded more intelligent. Actually, the baby pigs sounded...

There is a war in Iraq, a war that is going from bad to worse. There is a constitutional crisis in our nation’s capitol. These are things that matter to the people of this country, to a majority of 300 million people.

Don Imus is a foul-mouthed clown that has been listened to by one-half of one percent of the American people, most of them sporting an IQ that would represent an enviable golf score.

Imus said something ugly and stupid, something pretty much in line with the kind of ugly and stupid things he’s been saying for years, but this time he did it on a slow news day and a bunch of self-promoters took off with it. John Cole said it very well yesterday. He included a quote which I think bears repeating here.

JASON WHITLOCK, COLUMNIST, "KANSAS CITY STAR" I think that she should have met with her team in private and explained to them that Don Imus does not define who they are. Don Imus has nothing to do—Don Imus has nothing to do with their happiness. The joyful ride they went on to the national championship and that they know who they are, that they are proud, black and white women, educated women, competitive women, and there’s no outsider who can steal our joy and our accomplishment from us.

Then she should have issued a statement calling Don Imus an idiot, expressing that he needs to apologize, and that his employers need to deal with him and then that should have been the end of it.

There’s no way this called for an hour-long press conference with everyone climbing onto a cross and saying, look at me, I’m a victim here. There’s no way there should have been a meeting at the governor’s mansion about this Mickey Mouse B.S. No way this should have happened.

This is an embarrassment. I have listened to this entire thing and I’m embarrassed that our leadership in our community—and I’m speaking mostly about—has failed. We have failed.

We haven’t defined for young people who they are. And that no one can define for you who you are. You define for yourself, not Don Imus, not someone who has no input into your life. There’s no magical white, evil man who can utter a few words on a radio show and steal your joy and take away your accomplishment. That’s a joke.

To spend the majority of not just one, but two days' news programs in serious discussion of an ugly, meaningless little man displays a profound lack of understanding of what is really important. Should Imus be saying the kind of ugly, racist crap that he does? No. Should he be fired? No, he should never have been on the air in the first place. (But, given that he is there, he should be fired.) Is he worth 55 minutes of "news" airtime? Resoundingly no.

Give it a rest, and let’s talk about something that matters.

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