Local Reaction To Imus Comments

BLYTHEVILLE, AR--Under growing pressure CBS radio has fired host Don Imus after comments made last week about members of the Rutgers women's basketball team.

"I think it is real offensive anybody that has any kind of common sense at all wouldn't have said that," said Hanson Johnson.

"I think it's been pushed overboard and I think what he said is wrong," said Wintfrey Crain.

"If he apologized and it was a sincere apology then he shouldn't have said it. He realizes he went too far," said Diane England.

While everyone on the street has an opinion on the Don Imus comments, the comments hit home with women's basketball teams.

"He called them pretty much prostitutes and in my opinion those are stronger statements than the racial slurs he made towards educated ladies," said Blytheville women's basketball coach Melissa Young.

Young and her team feel the comments about the Rutgers' basketball team put women's basketball in a bad light. Junior guard Javalan Chew feels that while the comments weren't made about her they still hit home.

"It's hard to go on when people insult you like that, I felt degraded," said Chew.

Chew found it hard to understand why Imus took a discussion on sports and made it personal.

"The question that was asked to him was about the game, so I don't see why their appearance should matter anyway," said Chew.

While the lady Chickasaws say they were offended by the comments, forward Amelia Williams is unsure how the team would react if a radio host made the same comments about her team.

"It would be a lot closer to home. I feel they don't know them personally, so how could they judge them," said Williams.

"I would want him to go down. I would really want him to be fired because it is big insult to be called of the comment he made," said Chew.

While Imus has personally apologized to the Rutgers team, Coach Young feels the comments will be hard to get passed.

"I don't think anything he says can make it right, but everyone deserves to be forgiven and I think he has taken a step in that direction," said Young.

Meanwhile, the Imus Annual Radiothon Charity Drive has raised more than one-point-three million dollars. Producers for the radiothon say volunteers were getting about 200 more pledges per hour than they were last year.