About Me

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Mike hopes to see the world turned upside down through local communities banding together for social change, especially churches which have recognized the radical calling to be good news to the poor, to set free the prisoners and oppressed, and to become the social embodiment of the reign of God on earth as it is in heaven. He lives with the blessed memory of his wife, in Durham, NC, and has three adult children living in three different states. He also shares his life with the Mt. Level Missionary Baptist Church in Durham, the faculty and students of Shaw University Divinity School in Raleigh, NC, and the faithful fans of Duke and Baylor Basketball in his neighborhood.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

The notorious Duke sexual assault case has been dismissed. I think it is accurate to say that the victim's account, the lack of evidence, and the missteps in the prosecutor's office really did not support a case. I am glad that when the evidence did not add up, young men accused of rape and sexual assault have been exhonorated.

However, I do not agree with one depiction of this case which I heard on the radio this afternoon. It said that the accused had "done nothing wrong." I will stand by the conviction that hiring and leering at a stripper is wrong, that participating in racist and sexist speech and carousing is wrong, that underage drinking is wrong, that promoting drunkenness is wrong, that writing an email which threatens to skin a woman alive is wrong, that disturbing a family neighborhood with despicable behavior is wrong, and that acting like none of these things matter is wrong.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

As if there was a need for another post about Imus and Rutgers, I will provide one. I have written to CBS News concerning this issue, and I have forwarded my remarks to two of the advertisers from the Imus program: Holiday Inn and Trane. Other advertisers a colleague of mine identified are Humira and Panasonic, if you are interested. Here are my remarks:

I am forwarding remarks sent to CBS News concerning the offensive remarks made by Don Imus on their network. I am aware that you have advertised on his program, and I want you also to know my opinion.

I want to add my voice to the many who are appalled at the remarks of Don Imus about the Rutgers Women’s Basketball team. I can’t imagine why any decent person would make those kinds of remarks. It is offensive at many levels, including my own situation as a father of two high school girls and a professor at the historically black school, Shaw University.

We may not know whether Mr. Imus’s comments arise from a deep-seated racism or from the mercenary instincts of someone who knows how to make money by targeting the base sensibilities of a well-researched demographic. In either case, the cause is reprehensible. Why would a seemingly reputable news organization continue to promote such despicable speech? Why would educated and sensitive people let such programming go uncontested? I, for one, hold the network responsible for Imus’s predictable outburst. His record in making fun of blacks is well-documented.

CBS should know better than to pretend this can just be passed over. Take action appropriate to the case. When other talk show hosts have resorted to racist speech, it has cost them their jobs. Will you do more than slap him on the wrist and hope another controversy makes the heat go away? This is one 49-yr-old white male who will surely not be listening to Imus, nor holding back his opinion to anyone who would consider listening. I’ll also be sending copies of these remarks to advertisers.

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