Dear Mr. Imus:
We were troubled by your remark on the December 15 edition of Imus in the Morning and Imus On MSNBC, where you referred to the publishers of a new book called "The Christmas Thief" as "thieving Jews," and your subsequent "apology" on the same program, where you said (of thieving Jews), "I apologize … I realize that's redundant."
While we understand that your show is meant to be caustic, edgy and irreverent, we were deeply troubled by your words. As you know, the thieving Jew is an age-old anti-Semitic canard that still, unfortunately, has great currency today.
We realize that your show often uses humor to debunk stereotypes by poking fun at them, and we do have a sense of humor. Yet we have fielded dozens of e-mails, letters and calls since the program aired, with many listeners – both Jewish and non-Jewish – expressing anger and outrage, and we do not think their reaction was unjustified. We hope that you will, in future, be more careful to avoid generalizations that may reinforce negative perceptions of Jews.
Abraham H. Foxman