The National Association of Black Journalists urges Citadel CEO Farid Suleman and Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes to halt negotiations to return Don Imus to the radio and television.
“Recent reports that Imus is in informal talks with Fox Chairman Roger Ailes and is finalizing contractual details with Citadel Broadcasting are unimaginable,” said Barbara Ciara, NABJ president. “NABJ remains outraged after the racially inflammatory insults made by Don Imus last spring. He used his free speech to broadcast hate speech. 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.”
Imus was fired last April after the shock jock called members of the Rutgers women’s basketball team ‘nappy-headed hos.’
"It is our hope that Citadel Broadcasting and Fox News will put decency and good broadcast practices ahead of a dysfunctional alliance," Ciara added.
RBR observation: When (and if) Citadel brings Imus back to WABC it will likely be just that for starters — not ABC Radio Networks syndication; not Fox News. It will be a toe in the water to see how the ad market and listeners respond. We can’t imagine his return will not be accompanied with a Black co-host or at least some sort of regular African American guests to talk about racial issues, including what Imus did. The move right now for Suleman would be to tell NABJ this is the case — if it is.