Those African-Americans who are calling for Don Imus to be fired, should look to their own media. Radio One, an African-American owned radio network, for years has hired black racist talk show hosts. They constantly generalize about "white folks" or "Europeans." They're serious. They're not making jokes.
Ever seen any African-American comics on HBO or BET? One anti-white joke after another.
Are African-Americans going to fire anyone who makes racial jokes? How about blacks who do the dozens on other blacks? Let's fire them. Just because you're of the same race as the person to whom you are throwing the worst insults possible (the sole purpose of the dozens), doesn't absolve you of hurtful language.
Was Imus' comment stupid? Sure lots of Imus' comments are stupid. He has made a career out of stupid comments. Did I think he meant what he said? Of course not. He was doing the dozens. He insults everybody. He's a SHOCK JOCK. His purpose is to shock you. How can he shock you? By going to the limit of taste and sensitivity.
That's his job. You and I may not like the job description, but that's what he gets paid for.
I realize there's a danger in that kind of humor. But the essence of humor is exaggeration. Imus' technique of saying the worst thing that comes to his mind in order to get a laugh may be regrettable, but it doesn't make him a racist. If that were true then paint every jock and comic of every race with that brush and fire all of them.
Note: Yes. I'm white. As for the Oregonian-ness. I was born, raised and lived for 49 years in Baltimore, Maryland, one of the most African-American dominated cities in America. I also was a full-time student at Morgan State (then) College, where I was one of about 4 white folks enrolled.
Radio One purports to be not anti-white, but pro-African-American. White racists always use the line, "We're not anti-Black, we're pro white." I fail to see the difference. If you can't hear the racism on that network I suggest you check out your own self.