Rush’s Racist Rhetoric Coming Home to Roost
With Rush Limbaugh trying to become co-owner of the St. Louis Rams, his racially divisive commentary over the last 20 years - some as fresh as last month -- is surfacing. When I studied Limbaugh while heading the media watch group FAIR, colleague Steve Rendall and I assembled some of Limbaugh's racist remarks in an L.A. Times column.
I've long felt that his dismissive attitude toward African-Americans was best captured by a 1994 comment he made on his national radio show about - of all places - the St. Louis area. The dialogue begins after a caller described St. Louis' new light rail system:
I know St. Louis. Where does the light rail system go?
running from downtown at Union Station out to the airport, and then
there is one branch that runs to East St. Louis.
East St. Louis? They got no light rail system to West County? They got
a light rail system to East St. Louis where nobody goes . . .?!
At the time, East St. Louis was home to 41,000 people, 98 percent of them black.
A relevant statistic today: roughly 70 percent of NFL players are African-Americans.