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Thursday, April 12, 2007



(CHICAGO)(April 12, 2007) Don Imus has become a political basketball in the Democratic Party. And Hillary Clinton has sent Barack “Basketball Barry” Obama into overtime with her fast break and sharp elbows.

Senator Barack Obama fancies himself a basketball player. He was on his high school team. And he makes a point of playing basketball on vacation in Hawaii. Maybe elsewhere too.

But Hillary Clinton’s fast break and sharp elbows have stolen the ball from Obama on the Don Imus Imbroglio, forcing Barack into overtime.

Even worse for Obama, his intemperate remarks to ABC News involving his “two young daughters” on the Imus Imbroglio may have opened the door to even greater embarrassment for Obama concerning his ties to and campaign contributions from Black music entrepreneurs who profit from violent and misogynistic lyrics. Wassup Barry? Jump ball?

I want the hot dog concession. This “game” may have “legs.”

The Imus fracas began with the disgusting, disgraceful, deplorable remarks from radio shock jock Don Imus. No one can defend his comments; no one pretends to. But Imus’s lines were brief and a one-off. Nevertheless, the “civil rights profiteers” and hypocrites have been pig piling on Imus big time.

Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson got there first. Didn’t Obama ever hear the old saw “If you lie down with dogs, you catch fleas? Obama may have caught some fleas from Al and Jesse.

In the meantime, you have to love Hillary Clinton. She is something.

Clinton is struggling for black support in the face of Obama’s national media frenzy. Hillary is learning it is not easy running against an African-American star in the Black community. But the “You go girl” has snatched the ball from Barry O and now confronted him on his own turf, thanks to a little boost from

Due to our pungent criticism and analysis (and a little extrapolation) Obama may be facing major embarrassment for his ties to and contributions from Black music sextrepreneurs.

Here’s what happened. Never one to miss an opportunity, Hillary jumped on the Rutgers/Imus scandal by putting the players’ pictures—five young Black faces—on her campaign's home page []. Bold move. I love it. Hillary, the battle is to the brave. You are good. You may wear pants suits on the basketball court but you move with the best.

You can click through to a second Hillary page to “send a message” to the Rutgers women. There Hillary talks about “coarse sexism” (sounds like Bill Clinton to me) and a “disregard for basic decency” (more Bill Clinton). She says Imus was “disrespectful and degrading.” Hey, that’s my Bill. Pure Bill Clinton. What was she thinking? Who wrote those lines?

But Hillary ultimately set a trap for Obama, and he fell in.

Hillary gave Barack agita with her bold move, forcing Obama to play catch-up ball. (I’ll have catch-up on my hot dog; this is getting interesting.) I imagine Obama’s team said “captain, we have to do something.”

So Obama brought his two daughters into the campaign confrontation. He is, after all, a family man and by all the evidence a warm and loving parent. But he made a big mistake. He fumbled. (Will you forgive my mixed metaphor?) Game rules should always be: keep the kids out of it.

Obama spoke to ABC News. The Chicago Tribune quotes Obama [] as saying “[M]y two young daughters are having to deal with…It was a degrading comment,” thus linking his daughters to Imus’ gross stupidity and “coarse sexism.” Trying to counter Hillary and top her web site’s invitation, Obama demanded that Imus be fired. End of story. Not by a mile.

Who is the bigger threat to Obama’s “two young daughters?” Don Imus or the relentless violence, filth and misogyny peddled over hundreds of “urban” hip-hop and rap radio stations?

But Obama has never launched sustained attacks on rap lyrics, or demanded that Black hip-hop/rap sextrepreneurs who use “coarse sexism,” violent imagery and misogyny to excite young males, should be fired. Puff Daddy (P. Diddy or whatever) are you listening?

My guess: Obama has collected a part of his $25 million in campaign cash from precisely the hip-hop/rap smut merchants who are the greatest threat to his “two young daughters." And yet he attacks an old white man, seedy and goofy Don Imus, while allowing Black sextrepreneurs and misogynists to make billions with their violent lyrics on America’s radio waves.

Is there a double standard here? Yes, there is.

The most intelligent commentary on the Imus Imbroglio came from a writer at the Chicago Sun-Times, Deborah Douglas, who stated “[Imus] is an idiot. What’s our excuse?” [,CST-NWS-contro11.article]. To do Ms. Douglas one better: What is Obama’s excuse for attacking Imus and not the Black sextrepreneurs who peddle filth, violence and misogyny much more devastating to his “you young daughters?” Well, what about it Barry?

To repeat: Who is the greater threat to Obama’s “two young daughters?” Don Imus or the relentless rap/hip-hop filth broadcast over Chicago radio stations and in every major market? What about it Barry?

A Florida writer recently suggested that every time Obama slips, will be there to comment. We are. I have never met Mrs. Clinton, and I have absolutely no contact with her or her campaign. None. But it is hard not to admire a woman who could have been an extraordinary leader in her own right if she was not liked to the “coarse sexism” and “disrespectful and degrading” behavior of her husband.

Hillary, baby, (can I call her that?), you just stole the ball from “Basketball Barry.” Game point to you.

P. S. The most amusing Midwestern response to the Imus scandal came from Phil Rosenthal in the Chicago Tribune. His take: no one here knows Imus. Imus? Who he? You just have to love the left coast and right coast, and everything in between.

Chicago-based Internet journalist, broadcaster and media critic Andy Martin is the Executive Editor and publisher of © Copyright by Andy Martin 2007. Martin covers regional, national and world politics with forty years of personal experience. Columns also posted at; Comments? E-mail: Media contact: (866) 706-2639


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