While the nation has been fixated on the fiasco of Don Imus, a virulently self-obsessed radio/TV shock jock who should have been fired long ago for trying to pose as an adult, a much more serious breach of intelligence has occurred:
The Bush White House has been in desperate search of a "war czar."
Part of what strikes you about Don Imus and the racial, sexist insult that ended his career is that he has been known as a "good" shock jock whose verbal barbarities stand in line behind his charitable fund-raising and serious political interviews.
Go back a bit, and there's Time magazine proclaiming him one of the 25 most influential people in America. The publication quotes Maureen Dowd of The New York Times as saying he has "read everything, and he gets to the heart of everything." He was someone, said Time, who translated "stodgy politics into vital popular culture."
Don Imus' racist remarks got him fired by CBS on Thursday, the finale to a stunning fall for one of the nation's most prominent broadcasters.
Imus was initially suspended for two weeks after he called the Rutgers women's basketball team "nappy-headed hos" on the air last week. But outrage kept growing and advertisers kept bolting from his CBS radio show and its MSNBC simulcast, which was canceled Wednesday.
The selection of a sculptor from the People's Republic of China to carve the image of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in Chinese granite for his memorial on the National Mall has some black artists and others outraged.
"They've selected a Chinese sculptor from Communist China to do it," said Morris Howard, 48, an oil painter in Memphis, Tenn. "There's a lot of dissatisfaction with that."
MSBC fired Don Imus Wednesday, saying it would no longer simulcast his morning radio show because of his racial and sexual insults to the women's basketball team of Rutgers University.
The Imus incident is not about black or female but about green.
The issue here is money, ratings, controversy and fame. When money is involved, corporate media rarely deliver proper responses. Why should anyone expect that it in this case?
I'll leave it to greater (and lesser) minds to decide whether radio shock jock Don Imus should be fired for referring to the Rutgers University women's basketball team as "nappy headed hos" on his show last week because they lost the national championship game to Tennessee. He has since called his comments a "stupid, idiotic mistake."
Five years ago, Opie & Anthony were booted from the nationâ€™s airwaves for a stunt where listeners had sex in St. Patrickâ€™s Cathedral. On Tuesday morning, the shock jocks were back on the air, riffing on Don Imusâ€™ â€œnappy-headed hosâ€ fiasco.
The latest collision of outrageous radio and outraged listeners is business as usual for morning radio, where jocks walking the line between bad taste and big ratings continually reinvent the art of self-destruction.
Staples Inc. and Procter & Gamble Co. have pulled their advertising from Don Imus' radio show in the wake of the furor caused by his comments about the Rutgers women's basketball team (left).
The two companies on Tuesday added to the fallout that began when the now-suspended radio show host called the players "nappy-headed hos" on his April 4 show.
Last week, Sen. John McCain staged a truly Orwellian publicity stunt in a Baghdad market. In a desperate attempt to give some sliver of credence to claims that the dreaded "liberal media" are failing to report on all the wonderful things happening in Iraq, McCain took a brief walk outside the American-maintained fortress that is Baghdad's Green Zone.
By DAVID BAUDER
CBS Radio and MSNBC both said they were suspending Don Imus' morning talk show for two weeks following his reference last week to members of the Rutgers women's basketball team as "nappy-headed hos."
The suspension begins next Monday.