I’ve listened to some recent debate about what’s worse; the ongoing criminal actions of the current Bush administration or the malicious sexism and racial hatred that Don Imus broadcast live on the air to millions of people around the world. Some people say that Imus’ comments are symptomatic of a larger social problem that requires our attention. Others say his comments are insignificant compared to what our government is doing to us and the world. Ultimately I think that what is important is that people are finally noticing what’s going on around them for a change, and they are reacting to it and doing something positive about it.
In this society there are some basic rules to play by that most folks seem to agree upon. There are governmental rules and laws, and then there are also social rules and norms that have developed over time. In this context, I believe that most people know the difference between right and wrong, good and bad, and so forth. Even if they do not always exercise proper judgment, they still know the difference. Furthermore, I think that most people are now again willing to do something about it when they see something that they believe is wrong. Therefore when the neo-conservative and repuglican pundit media PIGS spew forth their hatred and bigotry for broadcast or publication they need to be held accountable. It’s plain and simple. Bad is bad and the majority of people recognize that. Folks are tired of this crap.
I also believe that most folks have finally tired of this administration’s agenda, and the larger-picture neo-conservative agenda. People have finally soured to it. I think that most people now see it for the criminal government that it is. I think that most people feel like they’ve been taken advantage of, and they should, because they have been. I believe that this ongoing realization is the dynamic that is affecting the levels of tolerance for hate mongers like Don Imus. People have had enough and they are starting to do something about it. I can only hope that the likes of Limbaugh, Coulter, O’Reilly, Boortz, Beck, Carlson, and Savage will soon experience the same public outrage and in turn be held accountable for their statements. I’d like to see them all off the air. Freedom of speech doesn’t necessarily guarantee you a broadcast media public forum to spread bigotry and hatred.
I think that the tide is definitely changing. I believe that it started before the mid-term elections of 2006. I think that the majority of people have finally realized what this administration has been doing to them, and doing to others worldwide in our name. In 2006 the American people threw out the repuglican congressional majority. Even with the measures for massive repuglican electoral fraud still firmly in place, the opposition numbers were big enough to oust most of the incumbent majority. Now many people have turned their attention to the media and they are finally realizing the divisive nature of repuglican hate-monger broadcasting. Soon things should begin to change there too.
The repuglican government’s fear tactics are no longer working either. People are no longer as distracted as before. They are much less receptive to the Bush agenda. Most people no longer believe that a neo-conservative agenda is in their best interest. The brainwashing is not working anymore. They’ve cried wolf too many times. They’ve changed the terror alert level too many times to divert public attention from their agenda. Most of all, this Iraq war has swayed the attitude of those middle-of-the-road Americans that carry with them the votes that differentiate the majority.
There’s little question that the government and the media have worked in consort to dumb-down media programming. It wasn’t just propagandized news reports or limiting the freedom of the press. It wasn’t merely scripting the content of the news broadcast. Dumbed-down television programming showed evidence of classic mass escapism but it was also employed as a smokescreen to hide governmental improprieties. A distracted public allowed for presidential power grabbing, weakening of the constitution, and just plain old fashioned greed, graft, and corruption. The dumbing-down process numbed peoples minds, luring them further into mass public escapism with television programming (hence American Idol, Survivor, Fear Factor, Dancing with the Stars, and similar telecast garbage ad nauseam). Many people still actually waste their time calling in to vote for amateur singers instead of questioning the role of their government. People call in to vote for celebrity dancers but they never call their Senators or Representatives.
Major media scrambled to install their hate-talking, divisive pundits on AM radio as well. The market grew with every hate-filled racial comment against Middle-Easterners, Mexicans, anything from France, and any other xenophobic manifestation of your choice. You can now pick a topic, any topic, and some fat, middle aged, white man on the AM radio is there to spew forth the repuglican party lies. The repuglican hatred. The divisive rhetoric that keeps us fighting amongst ourselves instead of critically examining our government’s activities. The rhetorical smoke screen that diverts our attention. It keeps many of us from realizing that our government is still engaged in criminal activities. It keeps many of us from realizing that several individuals in our government are profiting well from their immoral, illegitimate, and criminal activities.
All things considered, I do not think that it is that peculiar that people would react as they did to Imus. People have been programmed to pay attention to these media slugs and this time he just went too far. People couldn‘t stomach him pissing on these young ladies. What does surprise me is that the remaining media purveyors of divisive hatred are allowed to continue spewing their propaganda, without widespread public reaction, all the while enjoying the luxury of support from their sponsors. After all, it was ultimately the removal of Imus’ commercial sponsors that brought him down. MSNBC and CBS only caved in after all but one of Imus’ sponsors pulled their advertisements. When the money stopped, so did the show.
If people really want to have an impact on the content of television and radio programming, they ought to organize and boycott the products of the sponsors of these hate-mongering broadcasters. Repuglican politicians and their big business confederates fear the boycott because they know that it is a highly effective tool that gives power back to the people. They know it works. It empowers the very same people who otherwise have little or no power to confront or change their unrepresentative government. Repugs and large corporation moguls also fear the boycott because it hits them right where it hurts the most; in their wallets. And they worship money above all else.