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Imus Loses 2 Advertisers; Rutgers Team Agrees to Closed Meeting

Two companies have announced that they will pull advertisements from Don Imus’s morning show on MSNBC and CBS after the host made sexist and racist comments about the Rutgers women’s basketball team last week. Both Procter and Gamble Co. and Staples Inc. have decided to stop advertising with the show, following Imus’s controversial remarks calling the team’s players “nappy-headed hos.” A spokesperson for Staples told Reuters, “Based on recent comments that were made on the show, it prompted us to kind of take a look at our decision to advertise and as a result we decided to stop advertising on that program.” In addition, a third advertiser, Bigelow Tea, has announced that it will review its advertising commitments to the show.

During a press conference yesterday, the Rutgers Scarlet Knights coach and teammates announced that they have agreed to a private meeting with Imus. Team member Kia Vaughn explained that, in addition to wanting a personal apology, she would like to have an open conversation with Imus about how his statements affected her and her teammates, saying “I would like to speak to him personally and express how I feel face to face and ask him: After you’ve met me personally, do you still feel that I’m a ‘ho?'” Team members also mentioned their disappointment that Imus’s comments are overshadowing the accomplishments that they should be celebrating after a successful season, ranking second after losing the first four games of the season.

Feminist Majority Foundation President Eleanor Smeal will join the team and the Rutgers community at a rally this afternoon at 1:30 p.m. at the corner of Nichol and George on the Douglass Campus.

TAKE ACTION First, email CBS Radio and MSNBC and demand that Don Imus be fired. Then, sign our petition to congratulate both the Rutgers and Tennessee teams for their amazing seasons — don’t let Imus’s comments take away from their celebration!

Sources:

ABC News 4/11/07; AP 4/11/07; Reuters 4/11/07

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