MSNBC Drops Imus Show — Jesse Jackson to Push for More Black Hosts

So, someone at MSNBC finally listened to the show they have been airing for how many years now? Maybe, or they just took a good look at their pocketbooks. MSNBC decided that two weeks was not good enough, after a few advertisers pulled their business.

MSNBC said Wednesday it will drop its simulcast of the “Imus in the Morning” radio program, responding to growing outrage about the radio host’s racial slur against the Rutgers women’s basketball team.

“This decision comes as a result of an ongoing review process, which initially included the announcement of a suspension. It also takes into account many conversations with our own employees,” NBC news said in a statement.

The decision does not affect Imus’ nationally syndicated radio show, and the ultimate decision on the fate of that program will rest with executives at CBS Corp. In a statement, CBS reiterated that Imus will be suspended without pay for two weeks beginning on Monday, and that CBS Radio “will continue to speak with all concerned parties and monitor the situation closely.”

MSNBC’s action came after a growing list of sponsors — including American Express Co., Sprint Nextel Corp., Staples Inc., Procter & Gamble Co., and General Motors Corp. — said they were pulling ads from Imus’ show for the indefinite future.

NBC News President Steve Capus said he made the decision after reading thousands of e-mails and having countless discussions with NBC workers and the public, but he denied the potential loss of advertising dollars had anything to do with it.

“I take no joy in this. It’s not a particularly happy moment, but it needed to happen,” he said. “I can’t ignore the fact that there is a very long list of inappropriate comments, of inappropriate banter, and it has to stop.”He read thousands of emails? Wow. I’ll bet we could get a few thousand to email MSNBC about Keith Olbermann’s ridiculous Bush-hating, conspiracy theory rants, too. I wonder if he would read those. How about if thousands of conservatives emailed MSNBC about the general liberal slant of the entire network? I wonder what that would do? I am not buying the line that it had nothing to do with the advertising. It’s almost always about the money, baby. And the threat from Sharpton and his ilk. If conservatives could ever get advertisers to respond to complaints about Bush bashing and unfair reporting, maybe they could get some balance on the non-Fox networks. That, and find a Jesse Jackson-like figure to bully the networks to add more conservatives.

The Rev. Jesse Jackson said he planned to meet with CBS and NBC executives on Thursday with a delegation of other civil rights activists and lawmakers to discuss the Imus situation and diversity in broadcasting.

“Imus is on 1,040 hours a week and yet they have virtually no black show hosts. That is true for other networks as well,” Jackson said. “We must raise the ethical standard for all of them.”The more I think about it though, if it was all about the money, there would be many more networks trying to copy the success of Fox by adding some conservatives to their lineups. Sometimes I guess the money really isn’t enough.

Update: The more I think about it, the more I wonder if it would make a difference if Steve Capus got thousands of emails from conservatives personally hurt and offended by the anti-conservative rhetoric from MSNBC hosts such as Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann? Here is some MSNBC contact info. Blogburst anyone?

Update II: Bill Faith thinks maybe Jackson has a good idea and suggests MSNBC hire Bob Parks of Black & Right. Hey, I have been pushing for Star Parker to fill Star Jones’ seat on The View. Maybe we could get Jackson to suggest Parks and Parker. It even has a nice ring to it.

Update III: I don’t even know what to say about this.

Update IV (Kim): Brian Maloney at Radio Equalizer caught the LA Times parroting the lies disseminated by Media Matters for America that Imus is a conservative.

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