Imus Likely to Return to Airwaves

Don Imus, the radio host forced off the air in April for using a racist and sexist slur when describing the Rutgers women’s basketball team, is expected to announce that he will begin to broadcast with the largest talk radio station in the country, WABC. The show on WABC radio, owned by Citadel Broadcasting, would put Imus back on the air in December, less than a year after he was fired from CBS Radio and MSNBC. Since the story broke on the Drudge Report earlier this week, there has been no official word from WABC. However, the story has been picked up numerous news sources, including the New York Times and the Associated Press.

“To put him back on the air now makes light of his serious and offensive racial remarks that are still ringing in the ears of people all over this country,” said Barbara Ciara, president of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), which, along with a large coalition of civil and women’s rights activists, mounted a successful campaign last Spring to get Imus fired. Ciara told Newsday that Citadel has not responded to NABJ’s repeated requests for a meeting. “The silence has been deafening,” she said.

Imus is also in talks to broadcast his new show on RFD-TV, a satellite and cable channel accessible to more than 30 million homes in mostly rural communities across the country, the New York Times reported Wednesday.

News of Imus’ likely return broke on the same day that the Rutger’s team won the Women’s Sports Foundation’s Wilma Rudolph Courage Award for showing “exemplary poise and dignity in the wake of such bigotry.”


Variety 10/15/07; NABJ press release 10/9/07; Newsday 10/17/07; NY Times 10/17/07

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