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Hannity Still Upset Imus Got In Trouble For “Nappy Headed Ho's” Remarks

Reported by Ellen - January 16, 2009 -

Sean Hannity, the guy who gave sympathetic air time to a Neo-Nazi, can always be counted on to defend a white guy in trouble for making bigoted remarks. Mel Gibson, Duane “Dog” Chapman, Bill Bennett and Don Imus each received generous doses of Hannity rehab as soon as they came under media scrutiny for racially-objectionable comments. So it was no surprise that during the premiere week of Hannity's new show, Don Imus got a two-part interview, putting him in the same guest class as President Bush. On last night's (1/15/09) show, Hannity was clearly more resentful than Imus over the fallout for his “nappy headed ho's” comments. With video.

In Part 2 of the interview, Hannity asked Imus, “A lot of people out there that may not like what you say, don't like what I say, they sit there with no lives and they're monitoring every second of your show, my show and anyone else that's on the radio, hoping, praying that, you know, we may say one word, one sentence, one phrase, that they can then take out of context and get us off the air. You, you went through this – what, a little over a year ago. What do you think of these groups?” (By the way, in case Hannity was including me in that group, I have never once tried to get Hannity off the air. I have tried to hold him accountable.)

DI: I don't have any complaints... I never thought – I thought what I said was inappropriate and I didn't think that I should have said what I said about innocent people. Whether that was intended to be humorous or not, it was an observation that one, wasn't funny. It was directed at people who weren't really public figures and didn't have a mechanism to defend themselves.

DI: I kept going back to that we wouldn't be talking about any of this if I hadn't said what I said and I also didn't think that it was appropriate nor did I ask to be defended on the basis that I'm a nice guy, which I am, or that I raised hundreds of millions of dollars for – or that we have a ranch for kids with cancer.

Yeah, he has a ranch that costs far more than similar camps and when local newspapers reported on some questionable financial practices there “nice guy” Imus sicked his listeners on them in a vicious public vendetta. But I digress.

SH: Why can't people look at your whole life in context? Why can't you say, 'This was one 15-second moment in his life, that he apologized repeatedly for, made a mistake?' Do we live in an era where you can't say you're sorry, revise and extend your remarks, go apologize to people, try and make amends, and get forgiveness? It's like some people say, 'Alright, that's it! No texture, no context for the rest of your life.'

DI: In an ideal world, yes. But my opinion about all that changed when I went and talked to the team... the (Rutgers) girls... Well, they didn't think it was funny... They couldn't understand why I'd picked them... The point was, what it meant to them and that completely changed my mind about how it should be accepted... As I sit here today, I would rather it had not happened but I think what happened – my getting fired and all of that – was probably what should have happened.

Hannity seems to have a selective sense of texture, context and when you should forgive and forget. For example, Robert Byrd apologized and long ago renounced his association with the Ku Klux Klan in his early years. He has gone on to become a much respected and revered Senator. Yet Hannity continues to characterize him as a “former Klansman.” Similarly, Senator Dick Durbin long ago apologized for his comments in which he compared conditions at Guantanamo Bay to a concentration camp. But Hannity not only continues to portray Durbin as some kind of troop-hater based on that one remark, Hannity also repeatedly exaggerates and distorts what Durbin said in the first place. Most recently were Barack Obama's “bitter” comments about working class Democrats clinging to guns or religion. Obama quickly conceded his words were ill chosen. But Hannity continued to attack him for it months later.