A Nappy Headed Woman (not Ho) Speaks on Imus’ Return to the Airwaves

Last time I checked, Don Imus isn’t Jesus.  You wouldn’t know this from the media who talk and write about his return to radio on December 3 as if it’s the second coming.

Remember, Imus?  Sure you remember Imus.  The former syndicated radio host and MSNBC morning television personality who bears a striking resemblance to someone who is in the advances stages of rigor mortis.

Although he’s been off of the air since April when his utterance of the ill-timed “nappy-headed ho” remark caused a major stir, the cowboy-hatted one has never faded into the sunset. 

His name is often invoked every time some nitwit gets in trouble for diarrhea of the mouth. The most recent sufferer of the malady is Duane Chapman, star of the A&E Television series, Dog the Bounty Hunter, whose n-word laced tirade during a phone conversation with his son led to the indefinite suspension of the production of his show.   “Is this another example of the Imus effect?” they, the media, ask.

Another question that often arises is:  Should Imus have been fired for what many believe to be a bad joke aimed at unwitting recipients, in his case, the Rutgers Women’s Basketball team?

Don’t know.  Don’t care.  

The firing of Imus didn’t not help make living in New York City affordable or make my subway ride more pleasant.   And I still have to go to work every day.  Thanks for nothing I-man.

When he rides into town on December 3,  he will hitch his horse to Citadel Broadcasting’s  flagship station, WABC Radio in New York —  home to conservative gabbers Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh.

Imus’ return epitomizes what’s wrong with old media. Instead of trying to reach a newer, younger audience,  Citadel is trying to raise the dead. 

To make room for Imus, whose show will air in the 6 -10 a.m. slot, Citadel canceled the top 10 morning drive show, Curtis and KubyBy the way,  when Imus was on CBS-owned WFAN in New York prior to his ouster, his show’s ratings were a fraction of Curtis and Kuby’s.

Yes, you are right; it doesn’t make any sense.  

I loved Curtis and Kuby, co-hosted by Guardian Angel founder Curtis Silwa and uber-liberal civil rights lawyer Ron Kuby.   The two were like oil and water and a blast to listen to.  They were contentious without being combative.  Silwa is a natural on the radio, a humorous true New Yawker whose street smarts more than make up for his lack of formal education.   I even loved the way that Silwa “read” the commercials. You couldn’t tell if he was relating a personal story or selling you a product the promotion was so deftly woven into the tale. 

And by the way, MSNBC is not mourning the loss of Imus in the Morning.  The show’s replacement, Morning Joe (6-9 a.m. weekdays) may not killing it in the ratings but at least host Joe Scarborough isn’t as expensive as Imus whose return is costing Citadel a cool $20 million.   I wish my f-ups could pay off so handily.

When will the old heads of old media learn that world is moving at lightening speed and Imus is so very yesterday….And by December 3, he will be at least a million yesterdays.

Like a compulsive gambler in Las Vegas,  Citadel is placing all of its bets on Imus in hopes of a big payday through syndication.

Whether or not Citadel will hit the jackpot will depend on their ability to convince major advertisers, who have yet to make a commitment so far, to sign on.

A source of their skittishness could be the announcement that Imus is bringing back his old team. He has not said definitively whether or not his producer, Bernard McGuirk, the source of the show’s more vile jabs including the “nappy headed ho” remark, will be back as well.

If Citadel is unable to bring in the advertisers, Imus’ return will seem more like a false sighting than the second coming.  

You can stay tuned.  I won’t.


4 thoughts on “A Nappy Headed Woman (not Ho) Speaks on Imus’ Return to the Airwaves

  1. If your not going to listen to Imus in the Morning, why write about it.

    Whether he comes back as close to the Imus we knew pre-April remains to be seen. If he doesn’t the show will bomb.

    Controversy is important, especially in an election period. Imus has influenced many a campaign.

    The advertisers that do not get on board at the beginning will lose big time. That is my opinion.

    Farid Suleman is not taking a chance at all. He is betting on a sure thing. But the “THING” is Imus being Imus. Not some watered down version. Private citizens are off limits, but I believe all public figures are up for a good ride on the IMUS RANTS.

    Thank you for allowing me to respond.

  2. FIRST:
    I have wondered from day-1 how a group of journalist (NABJ) could possibly support censorship of IMUS when their very existence is contingent upon freedom of speech.

    SECOND:
    Rather than forgiving IMUS (by the way-I don’t think it was required in the first place) and working towards a solution to THEIR ISSUES with IMUS, (which is reasonable to expect from a “reverend”) Reverend(s) Sharpton/Jackson would settle for nothing less than the firing of IMUS (and many others on the IMUS payroll) all the while insisting a “national conversation” would be the result. If it ever occurred these past 8 months I missed it. You cannot have any type of conversation in a vacuum.

    FINALLY:
    Standing idly by and allowing someone to be censored opens up the door for someone to silence you. In a free society you can’t have it both ways. Hopefully once IMUS returns he will pick up right where he left off, entertaining his fans with original cutting-edge humor, great music & interesting interviews. He should spend little or no time rehashing this pathetic period in America.

    If Sharpton/Jackson want a National Conversation now on race relations they can have it on Sharpton’s radio show & on their own nickel, I really don’t care about race relations anymore.

    NOTE TO IMAN…I need a guest appearance on the new show to promote my new book: Black Journalist I Have Met While Sipping Bigalow Tea & Listening To Levon Helm With Kinky Friedman….

    Lord Hear Our Praye

  3. in your eyes imus may seem so ‘yesterday’. well here is one listener that has missed his morning show and can’t wait until his return. he is always interesting, and he is never dull. you want him to fail—but i believe you will end up being wrong. i hate it that he won’t be on msnbc anymore. i will find him on our local abc station.

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