Sunday, April 29, 2007
Shock jocks - I just don't get it . . .
While I'm a long time defender of the concept of freedom of speech (Hell no, we won't go!), I've been trying (for the last couple of weeks) to get my head 'round the idea of shock jocks.
(A shock jock is a slang term used to describe a type of radio broadcaster (sometimes a disk jockey) who attracts attention using humor that a significant portion of the listening audience may find offensive. The term is usually used pejoratively to describe evocative or irreverent broadcasters whose manners and on-air behavior is offensive to the listener.)
Although radio hosts like Howard Stern and Don Imus have been around a long time - to tell the truth, I just don't get it.
Don Imus was fired a couple a weeks ago from his controversial syndicated show. I saw part of a 60 minutes interview with Don Imus and I still don't get it. I don't understand why he has (or I stand corrected - HAD) a radio show and built a career thinking that he was smarter than the rest of us and that he was the privileged one who could put each of us in our place and tell us how it really is. He has prospered for many years amid allegations of racism, misogyny, homophobia and anti-semitism. Click here to read some of his inappropriate comments. Yeah, I just don't get it . . .
BUT what I really don't get is:
*the professionals who put Imus in a position to parade his brand of hate disguised as humor,
*the cruel lot who tune into this sh*t on a daily basis and find hate amusing,
*the advertisers, politicians, and others who jumped on the Don Imus hate bandwagon as a means of self promotion or an easy way to make a buck.
And even more baffling is that portion of the audience that maintain that they don't even like these types of programs but listen anyway. What the hell kind of sense does that make?
My first instinct is always to examine myself and think that there is something lacking in me. Maybe I've been in Europe too long, maybe I'm just not cool enough or smart enough to understand pop culture, maybe I've lost my sense of humor.
On second thought, I don't think it's me at all. I think it's him and I hope you just don't get it either . . .