Thursday, April 12, 2007

Imus and Kennedy: Two People Saying Stupid Things

It's interesting what you can and can't say. US radio star Don Imus described the Rutgers women's basketball team as 'nappy-headed hos' and has now been sacked. Rutgers coach C. Vivian Stringer defended the team. 'They are young ladies of class, distinction. They are articulate, they are brilliant, they are gifted. They are God's representatives in every sense of the word....We have all been physically, mentally, and emotionally spent, so hurt by the remarks that were uttered by Mr. Imus.' Imus was stupid, though I suspect he is no racist; Stringer was absurdly over-the-top. But that is the way of these stories, they must be conducted as legalistic zero-sum games. Meanwhile, in Germany (thanks to Kuala Lumpur Chris), the Scottish writer A.L.Kennedy gave an interview to the Berliner Zeitung. She said, 'When I take a look at the UK, it reminds me of the Nazi era. Blair is a delusioned war criminal. And I have little hope that Brown is any better. Once more we're stigmatising a single religious group, this time it's the Muslims. One part of society is labelled criminal. That really gets my back up.' And from what sources does she derive these radical insights? 'I've stopped reading the papers. An online service sends me a daily overview of the most important reports, mostly from American sources.' I won't do a Stringer here. But I will observe two things. First, her use of 'we' is odd since the Nazis were German and, secondly, her ignorantly disproportionate historical sense is an affront to six million Jews. But what Kennedy says is, in the eyes of the world, okay; what Imus says isn't. Funny old world.


  1. Last year I was on a radio show with A.L. Kennedy and found her both glib and patronising. I had not long before written a biography of Frank Sinatra and after I'd finished my piece, she and the other two guests, were asked by the show's host who they would like to write a biography about. "Why would I bother" was her answer. This is not the sole justification for my comments about her, but I'll not bore everyone with any more.

  2. We're light years away from nazi germany but i can see her parallels with what happened to the jews. What happened to the jews in germany is unparalelled in it's barbarity, but their was widespread vilification of the jews-most people then, not just in Germany, but in Europe hated the Jews.
    There is something similar happening now, everyone on the left as well as the right is condemning muslims. Obviously Islam is backward and basically cruel in it's current form (even in britain). But i don't see how this vilification campaign which is building momentum can do anything but cause trouble.
    Maybe that's what people want?
    It's what comes to mind evey time i read an article calling for a veil ban or another sun article (almost daily)critisising muslims.
    I don't think we can get muslims to intigrate with us. They believe in their religion too strongly, forcing them to change can only cause strife.

  3. It is obligatory for the New Loony Left to compare Bush and Blair to Nazis at every possible opportunity, even as they posit conspiracy theories about 9/11 and blame Israel for everything in the Middle East.

  4. I seem to recollect a German female politician getting fired for comparing G.W. Bush to Hitler.

    By the way, as for Imus (who I think should be sacked; his insult was supremely gratuitous and deeply demeaning), there's a much better comparison here in the U.S. and it was made today in a commentary piece in the Phila. Inquirer: Black rappers routinely call black women bitches and hoes. Not only do they get away with it, they are revered for it by their core audience.

    Violence -- especially rape -- against black women in the U.S. has gone way up in recent years and perpetrators are mostly black males. Gangsta rap is extremely popular, but not many people are willing to police its messages.

    I don't know who Kennedy is, but she sounds like a fool.

  5. How true, Brit. Anyone who knows the 911 officuial conspiracy theory to be a crock of horse manure is a loon. It's obvious. Long live the slave mentality.

  6. It's not necessarily true that 9/11 conspiracy theorists are loony by definition, but all the ones I've come across so far have been thus.

  7. I suspect that Mr. Imus is a racist by today's definition but not by his own. Mr. Imus grew up in the south when segregation was the law and lynching was not uncommon. I think Mr. Imus feels that since he is opposed to segregation and lynching that he can't possibly be a racist. But, he used the n-word in a discussion with Mike Wallace of 60 Minutes and frequently referred to Robin Quivers, the sidekick of Howard Stern, using that word to her face. I think it is also significant in that it took Mr. Imus 48 hours to feel that he needed to apologize. I don't think the world is a worse place with Mr. Imus off the air.