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The Imus Effect

By John Martin - Posted on 18 April 2007

I can't say I blame Obama for speaking out against Imus' remarks two weeks ago. On Monday, though, the Senator took it even further, comparing Imus' "verbal violence" to the Virginia Tech murders.

We have a lot of problems, but I'm not sure if you can compare racism, job outsourcing or substandard education to a very sick kid murdering 32 innocent people. We're capable of a lot as a nation, but ensuring the mental health of every last lonely and troubled kid may never be possible.

Obama's being earnest when he speaks out about Imus and the stereotypes his daughters will have to deal with as black women in the U.S., and he's right for doing so. For this reason alone he was right to speak out about Imus' remarks. Still, I can't help think about what effect it will have on Obama's campaign to compare Imus to a mass murderer.

Obama was on Imus' show a few years ago, and since Imus has always, always, said only the most positive things about the Senator. Imus hadn't yet endorsed any Democratic candidate, but it always seemed like he was comfortable with an Obama (and, thus, a Black) Presidency. Add the fact that Imus spent months on his show supporting Harold Ford's bid to become our second African-American Senator, and you have a powerful guy who, to his white listeners at least, helped make black political leaders seem a little bit more mainstream.

Imus' following is/was 3 million strong. I'm guessing they're in general a pretty politically-minded and influential audience. Unless he wants to be, Imus isn't done, and could be back in front of a microphone before the '08 primaries.

When that happens, his supporters will want to hear what he has to say. Hopefully Imus will give the Senator a pass.

Give him a pass?  I hope not - I think the country is pretty disgusted with Imus and all his BS throughout the years.  I hope he comes out against Obama - it will make Barack look all the better!

I would throw Rush and Howard into the same group as well.  I hope they all get thrown off the air and allow rational thought and conversation to come back in style.

I want a President who stands on principle.  That's why I support Obama.

I also want him to get elected.  Obama has broad support now.  I'd like to keep it that way. 

Hey JMartin~It's been a year (or more) since this Imus thing and now that Imus is back on the air, does anyone know where he stands on Obama? I did watch Imus every morning, and yes, totallly a meanie, with a heart of gold for the kids on the Imus Ranch. I was lying in bed, eyes closed, 1/2 wake when I heard him say the infamous remarks. I thought to myself, Oh no, you are gonna be in big trouble! I thought the same thing when his buddy Bernard said, the smartest thing to ever come out of Hillary Clintons mouth was Albert Einstein's p****.  Nothing happened with that! Whoa!

ANYWAY, if anyone knows how this is going now, I'd love to hear because I don't have the channel that Imus is on now.


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