MUSLIM GROUP CALLS FOR IMUS ADVERTISER, GUEST BOYCOTT
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 4/11/07) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today called on advertisers and guests to boycott Don Imus’ radio program because of his long history of racist and bigoted comments.
In the latest controversy, Imus made racist and demeaning remarks about the Rutgers women’s basketball team. He has since been suspended for a two-week period.
The Washington-based Islamic civil rights and advocacy group says Imus has repeatedly made racist and bigoted comments about African-Americans, Jews, Asians, and other minority groups.
In 2004, CAIR received an apology from MSNBC for anti-Arab/anti-Muslim remarks made on the “Imus in the Morning” program. In a segment commenting on the alleged execution of a wounded Iraqi by a U.S. Marine, a fictitious “Senior Military Affairs Advisor” to the program justified the killing by referring to a “booby-trapped raghead cadaver.” Another “Imus” program referred to Palestinians as “stinking animals” and suggested that they all be killed.
SEE: MSNBC Apologizes for ‘Imus’ Remarks (CAIR)
As early as 1985, Imus was forced to apologize for referring to Arabs as “goat-humping weasels.” In a reference to the 2004 crash of an Iranian airliner that killed 43 passengers, Imus said, “When I hear stories like that, I think who cares.” He then stated: “Too bad it wasn’t full of Saudi Arabians.”
In a statement, CAIR said:
“No advertiser who seeks customers, and no guest who wants to maintain his or her credibility, should have anything to do with a host who has such a long history of bigoted and racist comments. We all value the First Amendment right to free speech, but the listening and viewing public has no obligation to reward, or support those who reward the promotion of hatred and intolerance.”
CAIR’s statement is part of the group’s ongoing “Hate Hurts America” campaign designed to counter hate speech on talk radio.
CAIR, America’s largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 32 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-8787 or 202-744-7726, E-Mail: email@example.com; CAIR Communications Coordinator Rabiah Ahmed, 202-488-8787 or 202-439-1441, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, E-Mail: email@example.com