What Is True/Slant?
275+ knowledgeable contributors.
Reporting and insight on news of the moment.
Follow them and join the news conversation.

Sep. 15 2009 - 8:45 pm | 1,396 views | 2 recommendations | 15 comments

Rush Limbaugh hyperventilates racism over school bus beat down


In Obama’s America, the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering.
Rush Limbaugh on the Rush Limbaugh Radio Show, Sept. 15, 2009

Setting aside the pure ridiculousness of the statement, more telling is that white children beating up black children seems to be cool with Rush because, apparently, that’s how it was in the good old days before Obama became president.

Limbaugh was commenting on an incident that took place yesterday on a school bus in Belleville, Illinois where a group of black children participated in beating up a white child riding the bus. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Belleville has-

…a long history of racial turmoil, with a past that includes police harassment of black motorists, cross burnings and discrimination in city hiring.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Still, Belleville Police Capt., Don Sax, who orginally indicated that Monday’s attack may have been racially motivated, today said,

The incident appears now to be more about a couple of bullies on a bus dictating where people sit.

Via St. Louis Post Disptch

Racially motivated or not, there is no excuse for what happened on that school bus yesterday. Certainly, the children at fault require appropriate punishment.

But, in listening to Limbaugh’s comments, can there be any question that the wing nuts have determined to now openly go after the president because of his race?

One wonders how far the line between Limbaugh style entertainment and full-scale, open racism can be pushed? Clearly, Rush has decided that racism is good for ratings. Can promotional photos of Rush dressed in in a bed sheet and hood be far behind? Will he begin making personal appearances at Klan rallies now that he has figured out that there are more ratings to be garnered at cross burnings than CPAC conventions?

I know that conservatives are uncomfortable standing up to Rush. Like it or not, he wields extraordinary influence over the people conservatives must rely upon for support.

But I wonder if we’ve yet reached that moment where responsible conservatives stand up and say the words that ended the career of Senator Joseph McCarthy, “Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?

I’m talking about people like Bill Bennett, George Will, Joe Scarborough, John McCain and Lindsey Graham-conservatives whom, while seeing the world differently that I might, are people whom I believe have the best interest of the country at heart.

Is there any chance that we have reached that  moment where enough is enough? Will conservatives of good will and positive intent call Limbaugh out on this and begin putting an end to this dangerous exercise in determining how much one can get away with in the name of the First Amendment’s freedom of speech?

Let’s hope so. Because when radio entertainers with large audiences. large cigars and even larger egos are emboldened to the point of attacking the President of the United States for being a black man, we really are in very serious trouble.


Active Conversation
2 T/S Member Comments Called Out, 15 Total Comments
Post your comment »
  1. collapse expand

    We need to fight the last gasp of the Confederate States and the Right and White movement in this country. The idea that Bill Bennett, George Will, Joe Scarborough, John McCain and Lindsey Graham-conservatives have the best intentions of the country in mind is misguided, they are the while establishment, their connection to the new American order of not tolerance but exception is limited. Witness Scarbourgh’s treatment of Maddow on Olbermann’s show…flat out disgusting. They wouldn’t know their racist infused comments and connections because they are clueless and ignorant of their own prejudices.

    Can any of these opponents of everything Obama and liberal coherently defend their position without ferreting out every odd bit of news across the country to make their point.

    On a personal level I grew up with these guys, bigoted cops and ignorant relatives shouting at Whoopi during the Oscars years ago, “Nigger bitch, what the hell are you doing, who do you think you are?”

    They are protected by a army of public relation artists and have learned the sad tatic of reversing the argument. Obama is a racist, white people are being put down.

    These people are dinosaurs and culture, their enemy, will bury them.

    • collapse expand

      libtee – curious – are there any conservatives whom you say are people of good will and good intentions for the country?

      In response to another comment. See in context »
      • collapse expand

        “are there any conservatives whom you say are people of good will and good intentions for the country?”

        Perhaps Bill Clinton. Perhaps Barack Obama. Regardless, intentions or motives are meaningless. Only words and actions matter.

        As some have noted, “we don’t have a left and a right party in this country any more. We have a center right party, and a crazy party. Democrats have moved to the right, and the right has moved into a mental hospital.”

        In response to another comment. See in context »
      • collapse expand

        Your comment gave me pause because I have lots of friends who are conservative and even a couple of libertarian buddies. We have lively discussions about policy and they have reasonable arguments. I live in a liberal bubble…Waxman is my congressman and as you know our senators here in California are hardly conservative. When in Oregon voting against Gordon Smith gave me pause, he infuriated me at times but didn’t seem unreasonable.

        I never had such a strident opinion of a party before. Bush the Senior didn’t drive me nuts nor did Ford or Baker or George Schultz. It started with Gingrich and the attitude that democrats are not the opposition but the enemy that somehow half of the country is out to destroy America. The election of 1994 brought a group of people who spoke in one voice, literally. They all said the same thing in the same syntax on television, in print and on the floor. The country took a backseat to just crushing democrats. Under Rove it got worse, there were loyalty tests and political hit jobs against elected officials. The party became repellent to me. On the day Bush the younger was elected I did what the Tea Party does, I flew my flag up side down stunned that the vote could be even close.

        Here’s what really gets me. Not a single republican in Congress can vote for health care? Not a single member can see their opponents point of view? I know my anger reflects theirs and no one has fired on Sumter. Perhaps I need to put some chill in my words but is very difficult to see how the country’s welfare is served by such a party.

        In response to another comment. See in context »
  2. collapse expand

    “But I wonder if we’ve yet reached that moment where responsible conservatives stand up and say the words that ended the career of Senator Joseph McCarthy, “Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?”

    Don’t hold your breath.

    • collapse expand

      Yeah…probably true. But at some point, it seems that someone on the conservative side will see what is happening and try to do something about it. I truly can’t accept that there are none of them who realize how dangerous this is. I really expect Scarborough to call Rush out to some degree on his show tomorrow morning. We’ll see if he does.

      In response to another comment. See in context »
      • collapse expand

        Nothing will happen until after the 2010 elections, if then. If the Republicans make gains in Congress — and that’s likely, because of the Democrats’ sizable majority and the tendency of the party in power to lose off-year elections — that’s going to be seen as an endorsement of the wingnut strategy. The only thing that might get Republicans to speak out is if they lose even bigger in 2010 than they did in 2008 and 2006.

        In response to another comment. See in context »
  3. collapse expand

    I think the GOP is in a death spiral and none of their political leaders have anything positive to offset Obama, so they have just become the party of NO. In this vacuum of leadership stepped Rush and others that have decided to see how far they could push the racism envelope and that point has obviously not been reached to date. The average citizen of this country will keep score and hopefully punish the GOP leadership in 2010 and in the panic of defeat someone in the GOP will step forward and run “against Rush” as a “new republican” in the lead up to 2012, before the cycle is broken.

  4. collapse expand

    White people, of all political persuasions, get really defensive when they are called on their racial/racist behavior. To them, you need to be wearing a bleached sheet or throwing kerosene on a cross to qualify, otherwise, the other person is “playing the race card” (if they are a person of color) or “self-hating” (if they are white).

    Those republican congressional members will never call out Rush even tho he’s been engaging in these tactics for years, as have many “establishment” media types (pat buchanan comes immediately to mind) because this is their bread and butter. It’s only become more obvious and mainstreams because it’s their last resort in the face of an “opposition party” that is overwhelmingly composed of people who do not look and sound like them; who don’t come from their “middle american, working class towns.” Towns chock full of white people. Indeed, they would be even less likely to call him out now because their elections depend on creating this false psychological manifestation that people of color, EVEN the ones who are riding on your childrens’ school bus (gasp!) are out to get you.

  5. collapse expand

    As a mother and a teacher I can attest to the fact that children act in ways that mimic what the adults in their lives say and do. Take the school bus incident in Rexburg, Idaho when an entire bus load of elementary kids got chanting: “Assassinate Obama!” They didn’t come up with that on their own, but were echoing what they’ve heard in their homes. One would think that at least the LDS church (roughly 99.9% of Rexburg is Mormon) would issue a stern statement against this behavior from children and adults alike. Or that any number of politicians would jump at the chance to stand up for morality, and respect, and decency… yet too many “leaders” have remained too silent this whole time. I don’t think anyone will stand up to Rush or his obedient, zombie-like fan base anytime soon. Sad and discouraging.

  6. collapse expand

    I would just like to address the premise of what Rush said. First, black kids beat up white kids before Obama was president, secondly, kids cheer when other kids get beat up, thirdly, this group could very well be a group of friends that happen to be all black, beating up a white kid for a non-racial reason. But I guess innocent until proven guilty only applies to, in Palin’s words, “real Americans”.

  7. collapse expand

    While I completely agree with your views here, I do want to point out that Limbaugh is a businessman and the radio stations that carry his syndicated program must continue to see him as a very successful draw for advertising dollars. Sensationalism of this sort has always been a big selling point. I think Glen Beck’s recent demise was brought on by the threat of losing sponsors and so the “free market” system (to what ever extent that does exist) will eventually force these folks out the door. I challenge everyone with a passion about equity and fairness to post a comment or two on the websites of companies that advertise on Limbaugh’s show. This doesn’t silence the lunacy, but it does bring down the volume. Remember Tucker Carlson on MSNBC? I believe he ended up at the Cato Institute which is still amazing he could find meaningful employment–but at least he’s not in front of a microphone stirring up the nonsense. Our beloved First Amendment comes at a price in more than ways one.

    • collapse expand

      except that Glenn Beck has, in no way, suffered a demise. Indeed, commercial boycotts are just the thing to improve ratings. (see my piece from a few weeks ago on this subject). Beck has not been taken off the airwaves because of the boycott and if you follow his ratings, they are up rather substantially since the boycott began.

      The first amendment does not extend to inciting violence. You will recall the case of yelling fire in a crowded theater which is not a freedom of speech right.

      In response to another comment. See in context »
  8. collapse expand

    I believe more people need to approach Limbaugh
    and similar pundits with the attitude expressed in this commentary:


Log in for notification options
Comments RSS

Post Your Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment

Log in with your True/Slant account.

Previously logged in with Facebook?

Create an account to join True/Slant now.

Facebook users:
Create T/S account with Facebook

My T/S Activity Feed


    About Me

    I am an attorney in Southern California, and a frequent writer, speaker and consultant on health care policy and politics. To that end, I am active member of the Association of Health Care Journalists. Based in beautiful Santa Monica, California, I'm very pleased to have the opportunity to be a contributing editor to True/Slant. I've recently finished a book designed to make the health care debate understandable to the average reader, and expect it to be out in the next five months or earlier. In my 'spare time', I continue to write for television and, occasionally, for comic books.

    My checkered past includes stints in creative writing and production for television where I did strange things like founding the long running show "Access Hollywood" and serving, for many years, as the president of the Marvel Character Group where I had the distinct pleasure of being one of Spider-man's bosses.

    See my profile »
    Followers: 333
    Contributor Since: February 2009
    Location:Santa Monica,CA

    What I'm Up To

    Media inquiries:

    Melissa Van Fleet

    Ken Lindner & Associates, Inc.
    2029 Century Park East, Suite 1000
    Los Angeles, California 90067