Don Imus is a Dick…I Challenge Anyone to Prove Me Otherwise

D-Wil brought the fire with his incisive vitriol so now it’s time for me to bring the ice.

Believe me, I don’t want to be on my computer at 8:30 on a Saturday night. I want to be watching the Nets/Chicago game. I want my feet kicked up and my beer lampin’ on the night stand. That is what I want; what I have earned.

But I can’t get this anger out my gut so I have to write it out. If I didn’t add my two cents to the conversation then I wouldn’t be able to look at all the black women I love and who love me. In their names I have to say something. It’s my duty.

See, that’s what people like Don Imus don’t seem to get. As old as he is, he still doesn’t understand that it’s not – and never will be – okay for him to air his disgusting prejudices on the airwaves. I can’t police what a man believes. I have no desire to change his heart. He’s too old for me to waste my breathe. I only want him to grasp that in all of his time of living and with all of the fruits this nation has bestowed upon his soul, he has remained woefully ignorant. Let me repeat myself so that I’m clear. The real shame of the Don Imus debacle is that a man fast approaching 70, a man who came of age as black Americans were fighting in earnest for their civil liberties and who ripened into manhood beneath the banner of this nation’s only legitimate cultural revolution, didn’t know any better. Don, baby, are you that out of it?

That’s the shame.

The sadness is this: Imus and his gang were just trying to be hip. They were using the slang of the day. They were attempting to sound as though they have a clue of what goes on outside of their heavily insulated worlds. What they wound up sounding like were a pair of tourists – American tourists – who’d studied a slang dictionary for a few hours and assured themselves they had a foreign language all figured out.

The reference to Spike Lee’s School Daze might’ve been the worst slap in the face of all. You had to see the movie to understand the context to know when to use it as a reference point. Objectively speaking, calling the Rutgers-Tennessee game a matchup between the “Jiggerboos and the Wannabees” fit Spike’s archetype to a T. On college campuses – and in the community as a whole – color (and hair texture) has everything to do with who is valued and who is not, who is acceptable and who is not, who is authentic and who is not:

Exhibit A:

‘If you light you alright.

If your brown stick around.

If you black stay back.’

Exhibit B:

Red-bone brothers ain’t real brothers

Skin color is not just a sensitive issue for black folks– it’s downright painful. Darker skin black  men and women do have “issues” with lighter-skinned black men and women and vice versa. What people like Imus and his cronies don’t get is how deeply entwined white America is in creating and perpetuating that rift.

That’s the sadness.

The trouble is Michael Richards just got slow-roasted for using the “N” word and Imus still lost control of his lips in public.

The trouble is Isaiah Washington was required to go to rehab. for his insensitive remarks about gays, comments he also thought were funny.

The trouble is Imus seems to think his insipid apology the following morning is enough. Nobody wants his apology. His corrosive, cancerous mouth should be silenced.

The trouble is that’s not going to happen.

The trouble is America is becoming too comfortable appropriating black language without appreciating black history.

That’s the trouble.

Black women already bear brunt of this society’s burden. Again, anyone who wants to challenge me on this I welcome it. They take care of everybody’s children and yet they get the lowest paid jobs. They are the moral and spiritual conscience of this nation and yet they are the least empowered. Dark-skinned black women – Jiggerboos, I should say – have historically caught hell from every angle. Their “darkness” (especially when linked with the word “ho’s”) has historically been associated with sexual promiscuity and social deviance. They are seen as less desirable within their families and within society as whole. Lighter skinned black women – the Wannabeess – have a whole other struggle to contend with. Being ‘light, bright and damn near white’ means men find them more desirable (notably, Mr. Imus deemed the Tennessee team “cute”), but it also means they catch flack from darker-skinned black women for that very reason.

Women athletes have enough to contend with without Don Imus using his bully-pulpit to ridicule them. From the moment a girl picks up a ball she is making a political statement. She is announcing that she’s going redefine what it means to be a woman in a man’s world, saying, she’s going to pursue a dream that will in all likelihood set her apart from her peers. From that point on she walks in the line of fire: men who are threatened by her; family who does not understand her; a society that says she is not a woman. Now add to that mix race and all of the baggage that comes with being black. Then add to the mix the intra-racial strife within the black community I’ve already mentioned.

If it sounds like America has done a number on black folks, that’s because it’s true…and I haven’t even scratched the surface. My brain hurts too much for that now Thinking about these issues is exhausting and time consuming. I’ve already missed half of the game and my beer is warm. Thomas Jefferson once wrote, “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.” Well, I didn’t want to spend an hour writing this post. I don’t want to be that angry black guy who writes about black issues. But, if I have to bring the pain, I’ll bring it. It’s not all good out here. Racism is not a thing of the past. If nothing else, I can thank Imus and his chucklehead pals for reminding me of that.

16 Responses to “Don Imus is a Dick…I Challenge Anyone to Prove Me Otherwise”

  1. […] T o read the rest click here […]

  2. Imus is an asshole, it’s just as simple as that.

    The real question is why America continues to associate with someone who is as racist as they come.

    He looks as if he smells of coffee and cheap cigar without the morning mouth wash.

    Dude, I’m hot! There’s so much more fire I want to spew here, but it just wouldn’t be deemed professional.

    Whites could stop this punk ass coward dead in his double time depends wearin’ tracks, but they have to have the collective conscious to say what is correctly profound.

    Do you care America, or are you comfortable with his not so funny comedy?

  3. If you haven’t already, you should definitely check out Toni Morrison’s “The Bluest Eye.” It’s a wonderful book exploring how social perceptions of beauty (tied up in race and gender) have a psychological effect on black girls and women.

  4. Tracer Bullet Says:

    The real question is why America continues to associate with someone who is as racist as they come.

    Since when has bigotry been an impedement to success in the United States?

  5. Stupidity and ignorance gets a pass too often as being “edgy” or “honest.”

    I can think of a ton of examples, and you can start at the top of the government. Imus is just the latest.

  6. He is not racist.

    Give me a break.

    A jerk, yes. Not funny, sometimes. Fire him, whatever.

    But just because someone makes a very unfunny bad taste joke does not make that person a racist.

    Get over it. It was an awful comment, the young ladies should not be insulted after their accomplishments, but please, move on.

    This is so overblown.

  7. Call me ignorant, whatever…Imus has always been a dick, that’s pretty much the only reason he’s still on the air.

    But why is ignorance being associated with maliciousness?

    You’re basically saying:
    “This old guy doesn’t know what the hell he’s talking about.”

    And then telling us that’s the same as intentionally attacking someone?

    The guy DOESN’T UNDERSTAND. This whole thing would be a lot more offensive if he did!

    Can someone explain that to me?

  8. Guy Clericy Says:

    Defined RACISM please, for me racism is the belief that a race is superior to another .Can someone explain ?

  9. This whole Imus situation has been blown way out of proportion. First off I’m not an Imus fan & think he’s an arrogant asshole. What he said I definitely find in very bad taste and offensive to the Rutgers womens basketball team. I don’t like everyone screaming for Imus’ head and for him to get crucified over something he said while trying to be funny with his banter with another member of his radio show. It was thoughtless and stupid but EVERYONE has done and said thoughtless and stupid things. This country has something called Freedom of Speech. Imus has gone on every show imaginable to apologize and wants to personally apologize to the Rutgers team. Is he doing this to save his job and career ofcourse. I just really don’t like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton using this as a platform for publicity finding a powerful white man and treating this situation like the Sean Bell shooting or Abner Louima. I know that both these men interfere with white people’s perspective on sensitive issues in the black community. Jackson and Sharpton have said racist comments and have made plenty of mistakes so they’re the last people who should say to Imus or anyone that 1 wrong thing said you should get fired. This issue is very simple. If people stop listening and the sponsers and big named guest bail out on him Imus will be done.

  10. I am sure he’ll check into rehab soon.. like so many others..

  11. Billy Bob Says:

    Well, if you don’t like what Imus said (I can’t stand the man myself) there’s a simple solution…change channels and hear the same and worse kind of language from rappers and black so called commedians…go wash your own mouth before telling everyone else to clean theirs! It’s ridiculous to remain so sensitive that you let what some old guy says in his talk show gibberish. I can’t believe anyone would listen to Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton who are nothing but a couple of clowns making themselves and black people look like ignorant uncle tom’s. Why on earth would anyone follow these two whoring and theiving self righteous idiots is totally a mystery to me. The coach and teachers of these Rutgers players should be fired for their ignorant comments making the girls feel bad about themselves or shameful of their color. Rather as college instructors they should have used this as an example to show how to build strength, intelligence, and tolerance to live above and over people who make asinine comments. I can’t call Imus an idiot…the dude makes plenty of money legitimately at a job that requires no real skill or physical labor.

  12. CRYPTO-FASCIST Says:

    Imus, for better or worse, was simply lightly riffing on that great new black idiom, rap. Black leaders, including Sharton, are seeing that the price of calling out the Imuses of this world is increased scrutiny of their own idiom, ergo, Sharpton’s anti-hip hop label march.
    American blacks are going to have to come to terms with the fact that NO ONE ELSE ON THE PLANET puts out the volume of self-derogatory entertainment product. Once you put it out there, people are going to listen to it and repeat it. Disguising this issue as a black/white thing is a farce, when, if applied to other ethnic groups, its fraudulent logic is immediately apparent.
    For example, why is there no Jewish hip hop? They recently suffered a 6.0m genocide at the hands of the Germans? But where’s the music filled with anti-semitic insults and constant references to Jewish women as whores and prostitutes? What? There isn’t any such music, is there?
    How about Armenian rap? None.
    Croatian? Bosnian? Chinese? None.
    But any non-black who dares to either repeat the garbage phraseology common to the idiom, or, even worse, criticise it, is immediately labeled a “racist.”
    Cute, but not funny.

  13. says it all

  14. Thanks for sharing this information. Really is pack with new knowledge. Keep them coming.

  15. Dom Imus is not a Dick, he may not be the nicest guy, but you have to see what his latest comments ment. Some young Black Athletes act like they still live in the hood.

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