RUSH: I remain surprised. I still am surprised by what makes news on this program or what I say that makes news. Now, I know that this is the most talked about radio talk show out there, and I’m the most talked about host. So I got here today and I start doing show prep. I didn’t see any of this last night, and I find out that Page Six has made a big deal out of my comment last night over the rap lyrics that were uttered and sung by these frat boys at OU. And, Snerdley, you’ll remember this.
I simply said on the program yesterday that if Kanye West sang those very lyrics at the Grammys, he’d get a standing O, probably win awards, and that lyrics like that in rap music have created celebrities, millionaire celebrities and near royalty out of the artists that perform them. Now, you shook your head at some point, “No, I don’t think –” And then I said, “Well, maybe, okay, but you can’t deny,” I said, “that people who sing these lyrics are treated like royalty and win awards left and right.”
So that has made the news. That has made the news at E! Entertainment. It’s made the news at TMZ. It’s made the news at Page Six, and what’s also fascinating about it is it’s been reported factually. There isn’t any snark in it. (interruption) What? There isn’t any snark. I’m stunned. Normally I would have been myself hung in effigy over these. But there’s no snark no matter where you look.
I also pointed out yesterday when I was making my references to this I had discovered that over on Morning Joe on MSNBC, which we don’t play audio from because I have instituted a ban on that whole network. Understandably so. It’s trash. But that Mika Brzezinski blamed rap music for those frat boys singing what they were singing. It was unheard of, and Scarborough agreed with her, and to me this has opened up coverage of an event like this that I haven’t seen in a long time.
There is actual discussion taking place now of the free speech rights of the frat boys and how the university is denying them. And the usual civil rights coalition is not up in arms over this. (interruption) Well, you say “yet,” but there’s something different about this. You were gonna tell me why there’s no snark being reported, or in the reports of what I said? Why is there no snark, ’cause there usually is. (interruption) Hmm. Right. (interruption) Thinking what? (interruption) Oh. Oh, oh. I see. Well, that may be true. Snerdley’s point is that what I said is undeniably true and that everybody’s been thinking it.
Here you have these frat boys singing songs, and look, I set this up, by the way, I thought very, very wisely. How have they been educated? What have they been listening to as young kids growing up? What in the world have they heard? We’ve had the liberal education agenda. These frat boys, when they were in high school, junior high, middle school or whatever, they were taught that everything they said was wrong. They were supposed to have never gone there because they have been properly educated to understand what racism is and what mean-spiritedness is, and they were, in one sense, a giant failure of liberal education.
On the other hand, they’re out singing these songs and they’re making these videos and they’re watching other people do this getting rich doing it and becoming celebrities and living on the red carpet, which is where everybody seems to want to be these days, on the red carpet at an opening. Snerdley, are you telling me that the reason there’s no snark is everybody’s thinking what I articulated about the various words? (interruption) Well, the N-word particularly, but also, you know, hos and bitches and all those lyrics are common. They’re rampant and common.
But to me it was, I don’t know, surprising that there has not been, other than from the university president, there has not been universal condemnation of these frat boys. Not universal. There’s some people speaking up in their defense based on freedom of speech. And there’s some of these young college websites, not College Reform, but there’s a website called thefire.org. It’s an acronym, and I don’t have it in front of me, but they’ve written a big, long piece, college kids, talking about how their free speech rights have been denied. This is happening all over the university system in this country, and it’s a bad thing, that these kids had their free speech rights denied and they’re being kicked out of school because of it. It’s a new day.
So we have some audio sound bites that somewhat illustrate this. Not entirely. They come from CNN. This is last night on CNN with Don Lemon, and he is talking about my remarks comparing the OU chapter Sigma Alpha Epsilon to rappers and popular music.
LEMON: According to Rush Limbaugh, Rush Limbaugh says if Kanye West recorded the chant, it would be an instant hit. Listen.
RUSH ARCHIVE: If this has been a song by Kim Kardashian’s husband and they’d sung this song at the Grammys, it’d be a hit. Can we agree with that? But I’m telling you, this stuff gets awards and the people that sing it are portrayed as American royalty in terms of celebrity. You can’t deny that.
RUSH: And then Lemon threw it to his guests. Now, you would think, based on previous experience, that I would be literally roundly just criticized, beat up left and right, called names. Didn’t happen. Don Lemon turns to his first guest, the attorney, Areva Martin, and Oklahoma State University Media Professor Joey Senat, about me and my remarks. Lemon says, “Areva, does old Rush have a point here?”
MARTIN: They can sing that song at the Grammy?’s, they can sing that song out on the sidewalks in the public, but if white students sing that song on a bus at a public university, Title VI says the president has an obligation to rid that campus of that racial hostility. So that those students, those black students, can be free to learn in the same way that white students are.
RUSH: So she said, oh, yeah, you could sing that song at the Grammys, wouldn’t bother me. You can sing that song out on the sidewalks. But if you sing it on campus, the campus president has a right under Title VI to get rid of those kids. Which is what happened. Joey Senat is next. He’s a university media professor at Oklahoma.
SENAT: The US Supreme Court has already said twice when it comes to public university campuses, they are not enclaves immune from the First Amendment, that it does protect offensive speech, no matter how offensive to good taste. And you are now trying to equate their speech, which is what they were punished for, with conduct. And yes, if they had been involved in decision-making at the fraternity that was discriminatory, then that would be a conduct.
RUSH: So now they’re saying, “Wait a minute, all they did was say things. They didn’t do anything to anybody. There wasn’t any real racist conduct. They just uttered –” So people are defending their free speech rights. There are some people even — I didn’t print the articles, I’m sorry. ‘Cause I frankly didn’t know I was even gonna get into this ’til I saw these sound bites and saw that I had become part of this story, again. I wasn’t even gonna go there, again. So I don’t have the things printed in front of me, but there’s some people suggesting that these students are being railroaded because their free speech rights are being denied and they didn’t do anything.
They’re just mimicking what they’ve grown up hearing on the radio, television or what have you, or what they stream, however they get their content. They’re just mimicking it. But they didn’t do anything to anybody. The point is they’ve got defenders. And that, to me, is somewhat new, somewhat strange.
Then they brought in Marc Lamont Hill, he’s a traveling professor. Every time he’s on TV he’s a professor at a different school. Let’s see, where is he now, Marc Lamont Hill, Morehouse College today. Morehouse College professor Marc Lamont Hill. This is still Don Lemon. Lemon says, “Okay, should we just allow it everywhere then?” Because Lemon has not gotten any condemnation of this. In three guests, he hasn’t gotten any condemnation yet, and certainly not of me, and not very much condemnation of these frat boys. So here’s Lamont Hill answering the question, “Well, should we just allow it everywhere, Marc, and let these kids say it just so we know that it’s there?”
HILL: I don’t think we should police people’s speech. People should be able to say what they want. We should be able to have transparent ideas circulating in this nation, but there should be consequences for speech.
RUSH: When in the hell did this start? I’m telling you, there’s something very odd going on here. I don’t think we should police people’s speech? That’s exactly what these people have done their entire careers. It’s called political correctness. It’s called liberalism. All of a sudden these frat boys — you’d be amazed, folks. I’m sorry I didn’t print out all these different places I’ve read. You’d be amazed at the number of advocates they have who claim — I even saw somebody — and I’m telling you this is the result of generational cycling. I remember way back when I was much younger when I first began to intellectually understand and talk about the whole concept of free speech as a constitutional right.
I remember running into William F. Buckley, as many of you know, one of my heroes and idols. And Buckley was one of the first people I had heard say that the answer to offensive speech is more speech. The reaction to offensive speech is more speech, not restrictive. The only way to discredit offensive speech, which is specifically the kind of speech protected by the First — I mean, if everybody said what everybody agrees with you wouldn’t need a First Amendment guaranteeing it.
The First Amendment free speech clause exists because everybody knows you’re gonna hear things that offend you. And particularly in the political arena, which is what the First Amendment free speech thing was really aimed at, they didn’t want to limit political speech in any way, shape, manner, or form. And it’s all because you know you’re gonna hear things you don’t like, you don’t want to hear, you’re gonna be offended by and just because you were offended was no grounds for stopping it.
So the answer, the first theory that I came across in dealing with offensive speech, the answer was, more speech. I read it last night at one of these young college websites suggesting, if you’re bothered by these jerks at this university, at this frat, the answer to them is more speech of the condemnation kind, just condemn the hell out of what they said. The answer is not restricting speech. That doesn’t help anybody. And I’m starting to see this repeated now as sort of a cycle.
My point is that young people are beginning to articulate the free speech arguments that I first heard when I was their age however many number of years ago. But I can’t think of the last time I have encountered a story where college kids or anybody was out singing — you know, wait a minute, that’s the difference here. These kids are parroting, these frat boys are parroting what’s already out there. They’re not creating it. They’re mimicking it. And the people who are not offended by it know that, and to condemn the frat boys would be to condemn the rap music business, which they can’t do. They don’t want to go there, so they’re kind of forced into defending the frat boys.
The frat boys did not invent any of this, but nevertheless they’re being defended by people who, just last week, would be condemning the hell out of them. Anyway, I just thought it was fascinating. And the reporting on me, no snark, just straight up factually correct. They didn’t invent anything I didn’t say. They didn’t add snarky comments to what I said. They just reported it, and they reported whatever people’s reaction to it was. And when they talked about Mika Brzezinski blaming rap music, there was even no condemnation of that. Well, maybe a little.
But more than anything, there was understanding and maybe even a little agreement with it. There has to be a reason why and we’re gonna dig deep. We’re gonna figure out what it is. Now, the university president that expelled these frat boys is David Boren. David Boren is a long line, old-line Democrat, a former member of the US Senate, former governor of Oklahoma. Apparently he was operating as he should have under what CNN’s guest said under Title VI and getting rid of them and closing down the fraternity.
RUSH: Let me clarify something about the frat boys. They were not actually singing a rap song. They were using words that are omnipresent in rap music, but they were not mimicking a rap song. The point is that if you travel anywhere in America and you hear music, you can’t miss these words anymore on the radio now or however people are streaming musical content. If you can hear what they’re listening to, you can’t miss it. You can’t miss the N-word. You can’t miss the b-i-itch word. You can’t miss “ho.”
You can’t miss all these vile lyrics.
And I think people are fed up with it. So you have these frat boys who are on a bus. They’re probably consuming adult beverages. I still think what are factors here, is they’re trying to impress girls. It’s what frat boys do. That’s why there are frat boys. That’s why there are fraternities. They’re just trying to impress the girls with their bravery, their courage, their creativity or what have you, and somebody overheard it and blah, blah. I’m just telling you, I think the reason that so many people are coming to their defense…
By the way, that group FIRE, TheFire.org that I could not remember the name or the acronym, is Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. It’s an entire free speech movement devoted to freedom of speech in education. It’s a direct outgrowth of the censorship that accompanies political correctness. I mean, there’s all kinds of backlash, folks, in certain segments of younger generations to all of this PC stuff. I think the reason the frat boys have some usual suspects coming to their defense, namely…
Well, like these guests that Don Lemon had. It’s because to condemn the frat boys would immediately then force them into a position they don’t want to be on is defending the same words when sung by a rapper. I mean, if the frat boys are guilty of vile, disgusting speech, then what about the rappers who are becoming millionaires, multimillionaires, and winning awards using the words? That has to be what the mitigating factor is. No question in my mind.