Is Rush Limbaugh a Racist?

On his radio program yesterday, comedian Rush Limbaugh said this about Senator Barack Obama:

He’s — it’s — to me, it is striking how unqualified Obama is and how this whole thing came about with, within the Democrat Party. I think it really goes back to the fact that nobody had the guts to stand up and say no to a black guy. They just — they were — liberal policies are always going to end up strangling liberals, too.

And I think, I think this is a classic illustration here where affirmative action has reared its ugly head against them. It’s the reverse of it. They’ve, they’ve ended up nominating and placing at the top of their ticket somebody who’s not qualified, who has not earned it.

It’s perfect affirmative action. And because of all this guilt and the historic nature of things, nobody had the guts to say, well, wait a minute, do we really want to do this?

Its not the first time Limbaugh’s comments have waded into the shallow end of the pool for whites only.  In 1997, Limabugh and a caller got into it over a Democratic position on the Iraq warand the crisis in Darfur.

LIMBAUGH: Yeah. This is — you’re not going to believe this, but it’s very simple. And the sooner you believe it, and the sooner you let this truth permeate the boundaries you have that tell you this is just simply not possible, the better you will understand Democrats in everything. You are right. They want to get us out of Iraq, but they can’t wait to get us into Darfur.

CALLER: Right.

LIMBAUGH: There are two reasons. What color is the skin of the people in Darfur?

CALLER: Uh, yeah.

LIMBAUGH: It’s black. And who do the Democrats really need to keep voting for them? If they lose a significant percentage of this voting bloc, they’re in trouble.

CALLER: Yes. Yes. The black population.

LIMBAUGH: Right. So you go into Darfur and you go into South Africa, you get rid of the white government there. You put sanctions on them. You stand behind Nelson Mandela — who was bankrolled by communists for a time, had the support of certain communist leaders. You go to Ethiopia. You do the same thing.

And don’t forget, Limbaugh resigned after making racist comments about how the media was rooting for a black quarterback (Donavan McNabb of the Eagles and my alma mater, Syracuse) to succeed.

Why is this that California conservatives continue to revere Limbaugh so?  I think he’s a textbook case why we need a return to the Fairness Doctrine.  Put Rush on Cable TV or Satellite Radio where he can say anything he wants.  But when he’s coming over the public airwaves via the very limited broadcast spectrum, soem Fairness is needed.

  9 comments for “Is Rush Limbaugh a Racist?

  1. Agellius
    August 21, 2008 at 12:30 pm

    I’m not a big Limbaugh fan. He’s on while I’m at work so I never get to listen. But judging from the excerpts you posted, it’s clear what he’s saying is: (a) Obama is not qualified to be president; (b) the Democrats accepted him as their nominee anyway, because they were afraid of being branded racist if they rejected him. Neither statement is racist. Statement (a) speaks to Obama’s competence and qualifications only, not his race; or in MLK’s words, “not the color of his skin, but the content of his character”. Statement (b) speaks of Democrats, not of Obama or of black people.

    Inferring racism from racially innocuous statements like this is precisely what makes people afraid to discuss race directly and frankly. It also illustrates the very thing Limbaugh said the Democrats were afraid they might encounter if they rejected Obama as their nominee: the very slightest allusion to race is often characterized as racist by somebody, somewhere. Anyone offended by Limbaugh’s comments in this particular instance must be either extremely thin-skinned or else incapable of making reasonable distinctions.

    It’s a big mistake to label every passing reference to race as racism. It makes everyone paranoid. Don’t contribute to the paranoia.

  2. Dan Chmielewski
    August 21, 2008 at 12:40 pm

    But you are a fan of Rush’s, so hwo do you reconcile the “Baracl The Magic Negro” song or the comment made to a black listener years ago to “pull that bone from out of your nose.”

    And who is Rush to decide who’s qualified or not.

    Obama’s nomination has nothing to do with his race and everything to do with his ideas, his idealism and in the content of his character in how he ran his primary campaign.

    In Rush’s case, there are too many instances where race is an issue where it shouldn’t be.

  3. Agellius
    August 25, 2008 at 2:59 pm

    I am not a Limbaugh fan. I might be one if I ever had the chance to listen to him, but I never do, so I’m not.

    Who is Rush to decide whether he’s qualified? I don’t know. Who are you and I? Who *is* qualified? Doesn’t every voter get to make that determination for himself? I assume Rush is a voter.

    You may be right about Rush making race an issue too often. But I wouldn’t know since I don’t listen to him. Since you apparently do, maybe you’re a bigger Rush fan than I am. : )

  4. Marine In Florida
    October 27, 2008 at 10:00 am

    The problem is that Rush spews hatred over the airwaves. It is fine to have opinions, that is not the issue. The problem is one something is so one sided, and you send these sound bites out there, without playing the entire passage of someone speaking on a subject, you can slant the view however you feel. He never comes up with factual documents, statements, talking points, proof of any kind. He just talks and his so called “ditto” heads take in what he spewing is truth, when it’s not.

    What is so wrong with a black man becoming the President of the United States? I guess most people of Rush’s culture and background would like to see all African Americans back in chains on plantations, being treated less than animals. It is disheartening to know that a law existed during the days of slavery that described the “African” as less than 1/3 of a man, but a little more than a farm animal, and here this bigot, racist, extremist, marxist, nazi, spreads his garbage over the airwaves.

    If there was an African American on the airwaves talking about “Rush the Magic Whitey”, or spewing hatred about whites, he would be ostracized, taken down so fast, the ink wouldn’t dry on the blotter for his termination paperwork, before he could pack his belongings and leave the office. So save your cries, you have never been subjected to what African Americans have faced in this country.

  5. RHackett
    October 27, 2008 at 11:12 am

    You never address the question of qualifications.

    What makes Limbaugh’s opinions any more valid?

    They aren’t.

    If I were needing advice on getting divorced, drug dealing, illegal transactions, or finding an unofficial source for a boner drug I might
    listen to Limbaugh. Since I don’t have any need for those service I wouldn’t
    waste my time.

  6. November 7, 2008 at 1:11 pm

    Rush Limbaugh is a sad shell of a man. I made it a point to listen to his show today because Obama was scheduled to give his first press conference since his election.

    Rush Limbaugh is not only mean spirited. He is extremely jealous and envious of Obama for achieving something he could never aspire to. Limbaugh is also one of the most inarticulate radio personalities I’ve heard.

    Lush Rimbaugh doesn’t have a clue as to whether Obama is qualified. He certainly seemed to think that Sarah Palin was qualified for the position she was running for. Lush is a relic of the old deep hateful south. I have never heard him say anything positive abour an black individual. He’s a detestable old fat drug addicted fart.

  7. Liz Hayes
    November 12, 2008 at 8:49 pm

    – I also heard Corlin Powell on Meet the Press re: the reason he was not endorsing Senator McClain. I have sent various e-mails to the networks re: Talk Show Host,. Rush Limbaugh. How he is allow to continue on the air with his racist remarks are beyond me. He called Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and Pres Elect Obama Chicago Thugs – he should not be allowed to get away with this for it is UNAMERICAN. I have written to the Chairman of the FCC and e-mailed various nets works to get him off the air. Now he is blaming PE Obama for the state of our economy and no doubt he will continue to criticize
    him for the next 4 years. I believe PE Obama is good for our country and the world and it breaks my heart that they will not give him a chance.
    I am going to do all I can to get R. Limbaugh off the air.

  8. Decystallizing Reason
    November 13, 2008 at 10:57 am

    Maybe he wasn’t being racist, or maybe he was. Only Rush knows for sure. I’m sure he doesn’t care either. He is the richest and most popular man in radio. So that is no weight on his shoulders.

    Its the job of different syndicated media sources to slam each other, otherwise there wouldn’t be politics, and whats the fun with out that? No fun, because people would be out of jobs and our economy would collapse…even more.

    Barack seems like he is qualified to be president to me. Well, at least more than Caribou Barbie. Look how Grandpa and her campaign went! It was an unprecedented disaster. Let’s just see how President Obama works out before we pass judgment on him.

    Sorry Christian conservatives, but you lost this cycle. Keep Caribou Barbie on the ticket for 2012, I’m sure THAT will work for your party. How about electing someone like Ron Paul or Mike Gravel for a “real” change?

    I would be more concerned about people such as Mark Levin than Rush Limbaugh. Levin is the legal definition of evil. I guess that proves someone with a JD can still be an ignorant guttersnipe and have no idea what they are doing when they spread their pseudo-patriotism.

    Good day.

  9. Steve Kim
    November 13, 2008 at 10:23 pm

    Is this a trick question?

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