As the Forward newspaper reported in a December 8 online article, Don Imus referred to the "Jewish management" of CBS Radio as "money-grubbing bastards" on the November 30 broadcast of MSNBC's Imus in the Morning. Imus was discussing a past conflict with his bosses about hosting the musical group the Blind Boys of Alabama. Executive producer Bernard McGuirk asked, "Even if you wear a beanie, how can you not love the Blind Boys?" Imus continued, "I said, 'They're handicapped, they're black, and they're blind. How do we lose here?' And then a light bulb just went off over [the managers'] scummy little heads." CBS Radio owns WFAN, the New York station that is the flagship for Imus' radio show.
From the November 30 edition of MSNBC's Imus in the Morning:
IMUS: A great hour coming up. The Blind Boys of Alabama are gonna sing a bunch of tunes for us. I mean, they, you know, are just an American treasure.
CHARLES McCORD (co-host): That is not an overstatement.
IMUS: I remember when I first had 'em on a few years ago how the Jewish management at --
IMUS: -- at whatever, whoever we work for, CBS, or whatever it is, were bitching at me about it. You know.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Careful there, Mel.
IMUS: And, uh -- well, not Mel. Mel's always [unintelligible]
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I meant Mel Gibson.
IMUS: Oh. Well, no, no, that's not from where I'm coming, obviously.
McCORD: You meant Mel Allen, then.
IMUS: But, uh, you know.
McGUIRK: They were dissing the handicapped African-Americans --
IMUS: Remember that?
McGUIRK: -- who love the baby Jesus.
IMUS: Remember that?
IMUS: We had a meeting in my office.
McCORD: I recall.
McGUIRK: The Blind Boys? No, no!
IMUS: They were furious. But, of course, I don't care what they say and never have.
IMUS: And thank God. What, Bernie?
McGUIRK: Even if you wear a beanie, how can you not love the Blind Boys?
McCORD: These guys.
IMUS: Well, as I -- I tried to put it in terms that these money-grubbing bastards could understand.
IMUS: I said -- and they're always worried about my image and all that sort of thing, you know. And I said, "They're handicapped, they're black, and they're blind. How do we lose here?" And then a light bulb just went off over their scummy little heads. And, plus, they're great!
McCORD: And they are great. Where is the downside? Explain that to me.