Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Hypocrisy on Imus AND the Duke Lacrosse Hoax

Today, April 11th, 2007, some 395 days since it began, ALL the charges filed against David Evans, Reade Seligman and Colin Finnerty (above bottom row) were dropped after the North Carolina DA looked at all the charges and evidence with “fresh eyes.”Now both Mike Nifong, facing disbarment and possibly Civil and criminal penalties, and Crystal Mangum (above top left), facing charges of filing a false police report, await their own fates in the matter.

Mike Nifong is the primary villain in that case, a vile “public servant,’ so greedy for another term as Raleigh-Durham, NC District Attorney, he was perfectly willing to attempt to railroad three innocent men for crimes that it was clear, since last April (the DNA evidence showed none of the Duke LAX players raped the accused, a year ago) they did not do.

This happens in the midst of another media circus over radio shock-jock, Don Imus’ (above top right) insensitive comments about the Rutgers Women’s Basketball team, a situation not without its fair share of hypocrisy, including Imus’ own groveling to an equally odious and offensive figure – Al sharpton.

Don Imus has long been an equal opportunity, universal offender – Jews, Catholics, gays, blacks have all been the butt of the Imus’ crew’s, often juvenile jokes, but as often happens, with such figures, one of those characterizations crossed the line and has become a cause celeb. In fact, I think Imus' recent outburst has gained the traction it has, not because of any perveived "sexism" or "racism," but because they were generally seen as bullying a group of women who really weren't public figures, who didn'thave a public forum from which to respond.

The hypocrisy is that while Imus, a satirist and well-known universal offender is pilloried for his off-color remarks, rappers and many comics who traffic in even more vile characterizations are not. The frightening prospect is whether this will embolden those both Left and Right who'd seek to silence those with whom they disagree.

If anything good is to come out of the Imus hypocrisy it well may be the eradication of that despicable double standard. If we’re going to enforce some civility standards on the entertainment industry, then we should soon see the eradication of hip hop, or at least the entertainment industry’s support for it.

Can anyone say “Disco sucks?”

Remember the 1980s backlash against disco music? Well, if the offense over the Imus comments is real, then we should soon see an anti-hip hop backlash that’ll make the “disco sucks” era look tame. At the time I reviled Disco, yeah, probably because I couldn't dance - I hated the BeeGees and reviled most "dance music," save for (gulp!) Donna Summer...yes, I always liked Donna Summer's voice...and looks too. Still, I must admit, that I despise rap even more. I find nothing socially redeeming about it at all. Hopefully this new found cry for public decency will expand.

If not, then the double standard that finds off-color, satirical stupidity by an Imus to be unacceptable, and the same by a “Fifty Cent” or a Chris Rock to be fine, has to be the next casualty.

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