To which I can only say: Are you fucking kidding me?
I never thought I'd say this, but: thank goodness for Al Sharpton.
I probably don't need to remind you, but just in case: back in April, CBS fired Imus after his public degradation of the women of Rutgers University's champion basketball team. It was the last straw, placed upon decades of Imus' on-air stupidity, and enough people stood up and demanded that he be fired that CBS complied.
Given that--that it took the public outcry, that CBS didn't fire him of their own accord--I guess I shouldn't be surprised that CBS is paying him a $20 million termination fee. Or that rival radio magnates are calculating the pros and cons of hiring him on.
$20 million. That's more than CBS made in a year off his show. I couldn't find a figure on what Imus' annual salary was for the show (if you can, post it in the comments), but logic would say $20 million has to be anywhere from 5-10 times what he was bringing home.
Seriously, can you imagine making a crappy racist, sexist statement like that at your job, and then being paid 5-10 times your annual salary to leave? If you knew that would be the outcome, would you start spewing hate speech tomorrow? What the hell kind of precedent are we setting here? Imus shouldn't get $20 million. He shouldn't get another radio show. He should get his mouth washed out with soap.
The Post quotes Rev. Al Sharpton:
In any case, Sharpton said he would be watching. "Wherever he resurfaces, we at National Action Network and other groups will be watching and monitoring him," Sharpton said in a statement. "Mr. Imus has the right to work but we have the right to make sure that this repeat offender does not return and continue what he has done historically."
He has the right to work, but not necessarily on air. Here's hoping Imus' next job does not require him to talk.