Rush Limbaugh

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RUSH: This is Derek in Detroit. Welcome, sir, to the EIB Network.
CALLER: Good afternoon. How you doing today, sir?
RUSH: Hey, you’ve been on this show befo’?
CALLER: Yes, I have.
RUSH: Well, it’s great to have you back.
CALLER: (Laughing.) I just wanted to call and correct you. You made the statement that black people can’t be racist and it was basically an incomplete statement. The entire statement is that black people are capable of prejudice but we’re not capable of racism because we lack the institutional power to implement racism.
RUSH: Yeah, but —
CALLER: So racism is a term that’s generally used to the majority in the population who can enforce it.
RUSH: Yeah, but that’s wrong. You know, words mean things, and racism has a definition. The problem with liberalism and political correctness and so forth, is they try to change the definition of certain words because liberals don’t like to hear it. The idea that a black person cannot be racist ? racist is an attitude and a behavior. Whether you have the power to implement it or not is irrelevant. Anybody can be racist. Anybody could be a bigot. Anybody can be a sexist, a homophobe or any of those sorts of things. Unfortunately those things are just stereotypically applied to conservatives.
CALLER: Right. Well, I mean, in times past you’ve been accused of being certain things and when you make an incomplete statement like that, that just exacerbates it. I personally don’t think you’re racist. You’re cool with me. Any time you come Detroit, we can hang out. You know that.
RUSH: Somebody told me once that the reason I have problems is that I’m not down with the struggle.
CALLER: Well, no, I mean, the thing of it is that, you know, a lot of times I believe — I truly believe that, you know, it’s never as bad as one group might say, and it’s never as good as other group might say. The truth is always somewhere in the middle, in my opinion. As an African-American, I’ve experienced racism. Can I hold that against an entire group of people? No.
RUSH: Good.
CALLER: No, I can’t. Because, you know, yeah, I’ve experienced overt racism, covert racism. You know, I mean it’s hard for people who, you know, haven’t experience it. You know, it’s a mile in my shoes type of situation. I’ve been followed around a mall. I?ve been followed around a store like I was going to steal something at the store. I’ve been walking across a busy street and heard doors locking like I was getting ready to rob somebody, you know what I’m saying? You know, you get to the point where you can’t let that stop you, though because if you let that type of ignorance paralyze you, where do you go? You go nowhere.

RUSH: That’s true. That’s very wise and very mature of you. Although I think all human beings, including Americans, encounter similar obstacles. There may be varying degrees. I think I have been a victim of racism. No, no, no, reverse racism. There are many people who think simply because I’m white that I hold certain views that are negative, harmful, prejudiced and so forth to black people. We had a guy that was on hold, he didn’t want to stay on hold, he hung up, who was going to ask me if I would vote for a black president. Now, what is that, if that’s not racism?
CALLER: Well, the thing of it is, is, there are times and, you know, I’m a great fan of yours, but there are times that you have seemed dismissive of concerns, you know what I mean?
RUSH: You know why?
CALLER: Whether or not that’s racism on its face, I mean it’s easy to label something. You know what I mean? Like I said, I don’t think you’re racist. I’ve never thought you were racist. But you have been dismissive of certain things.
RUSH: Thank you. Well, let me explain that. Some of this is your interpretation.
CALLER: Yeah, and that’s all it is.
RUSH: Well, let me explain it to you. I’m actually glad to have the opportunity to do it again. See, I believe overall in humanity. I believe in individuals. And I believe in rugged individuals. I think all individuals have the ability to overcome obstacles in life, whatever they are, and we all face them.
CALLER: Absolutely.
RUSH: There’s not a one of us that doesn’t. Sympathy is good for nothing, other than making somebody feel good. But after that, what do you do? It does no good to sympathize and try to tell black kids who were born in the 1990s that their lives and their futures are equal to those who lived in the Civil War era. It’s just ridiculous.
CALLER: Okay, but at the same time you can’t just out of hand dismiss the historical things that have happened to black people.
RUSH: I think at some point it’s going to have to happen, Derek.
CALLER: I think this is the thing. I think that people make the mistake of not giving that information as a reference point, you know what I mean, because I’ll put it to you this way. America is the greatest country on earth. I wouldn’t want to live nowhere else. If they gave us free passage back to Africa, I’d tell ’em, ?No thank you,? because I’ve never been to Africa. I’m not African. I’m American. And there’s no country on the planet that I can succeed in like this one.
RUSH: Your historical roots, whatever, fine. Know them, appreciate them —
CALLER: Well, Rush, this is my point. When my dad turned 18 he wasn’t allowed to vote. You see what I’m saying? We’ve only had the vote since 1964, you know what I mean? And a lot of times when people say, when you say, ?Get over it,? it’s like, hold on, we’ve only been able to vote —
RUSH: I’m not saying get over it. Derek, I want you to listen to me for a second. Can you hear me?
CALLER: — for forty years. I?m not saying you, but your dismissiveness can be taken as a ?get over it? attitude.

RUSH: Derek, I want you to listen to me for a second, and I’m going to take you down off the air. You can talk all you want, but nobody will hear you, including me. I appreciate the filibuster and I know what you’re saying. The point is I’m not saying you should forget about it and get over it. But recognize progress. Recognize that there are great strides that have taken place and will continue to take place, and understand that everybody in life has certain kinds of obstacles. There are any number of people who are discriminated against because of various aspects of their existence. And we all face them. My point is that rather than sit around and tell people to continue to wallow in the past and think that that creates some sort of an entitlement, that is not a service to people. That is keeping them down and keeping them in a place where they’re never going to realize their full potential.
There are countless millions of examples throughout this country of black Americans who have overcome all of this, who are realizing their dreams, who are doing it by their own hard work and their initiative. The market is there for achievement and for excellence and accomplishment. I want every individual to be the best they can be. I want every individual to understand the potential that resides inside them — because I want a great country. I cringe when I see anybody, any group or any individual being told that they don’t have a chance to become anything because of X, when this country disproves it each and every day.
Derek, there are certain undeniable facts. There are Asians that have immigrated to this country who are running rings around Native Americans born here, white, black, what have you, because they don’t have any of these reference points of discrimination and history. In fact, if they wanted to, they could. They could go back and say we were imprisoned and we were mistreated building the railroads. They don’t do that. They just come here and they run rings around everybody. The University of California had to reorient its admission system because the people scoring highest on entrance exams were Asians, and it still is a problem. Achievement orientation, becoming better than you think that you can be, any of these things, these are great human characteristics. Human, not white, not Asian, not black.
They’re in all of us. But when somebody, or especially a group of people, is told by a political party for 50 years that they don’t have a chance unless they vote a certain way, I react the same way as when I hear that people suffering incurable diseases only have a chance if Democrats are elected. It offends me, it enrages me, and for those of you in Rio Linda, it makes me mad. All I’m saying is that the desire I have for every human being to use the opportunity of life, to maximize their enjoyment and the opportunity to achieve — this is how we define ourselves — is in all of us, and when it’s denied because of a political party desiring to get a bloc of votes from people by keeping them dependent, I am offended, I am outraged at that. That, to me, is human bondage, Derek, and it is still going on. If there’s a plantation in this country today, it’s owned and operated by white liberals. You can bring him back up now. You still there?
Yeah, I’m still here. Listen, Rush, I agree with you a hundred percent.
RUSH: Well, good.
CALLER: I do agree with you, and like I said before, there’s no place in the world I’d rather be, you know what I mean, because my opportunities for success are not going to be greater anyplace else. I don’t want anybody to hand anything to me, never, ever, ever in life. I want to earn everything I get and that’s what I teach my son. But I also teach my son the historical perspective of the things that his forefathers went through.
RUSH: Just don’t turn him into somebody who hates. Because that will paralyze him. Hate doesn’t do anybody any good. It doesn’t. It’s not a motivator. It doesn’t inspire. It just enrages and angers and paralyzes.

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