While Rush Limbaugh backpedals and his “dittohead” fans defend the “White Christmas” parody musing about race riots during the Democratic National Convention, Denver conservative talk radio station Newsradio 850KOA seizes the opportunity to promote its website. How classy.When one pompous blowhard cites another pompous blowhard on as incendiary an issue as race relations in America mayhem is sure to ensue.
Witness conservative talk radio blabber Rush Limbaugh’s repugnant reaction to fellow radio flapper Rev. Al Sharpton’s warning of “trouble” should Sen. Barack Obama fail to win the presidential nomination at the Democratic National Convention in Denver this summer.
The dream end of this is that this keeps up to the convention and we have a replay of Chicago 1968 with burning cars, protests, fires, literal riots, and all of that. That’s that’s the objective here.”
“Riots in Denver, the Democrat [sic] Convention would see to it that we don’t elect Democrats…”
One can argue the merits of First Amendment protections — even the right to idiotic, attention-whoring speech — ’til the cows come home.
But what about inciting racism and buffoonery for the sake of crass commercialism?
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:webmaster@850…] Sent: Thursday, April 24, 2008 4:38 PM
Subject: Screw the world, riot in Denver!
Yesterday, Rush told a caller that he was ‘dreaming of riots in Denver,’ as a discredit to the Democratic leadership in this country.
Did he go to far? Or is this just Rush being Rush?
Come listen to the call and talk about it in our forum.
Is there nothing — good taste, common sense or simple decency — worth sacrificing on the public airwaves for the almighty Arbitron rating at 850KOA?
Colorado Media Matters’ editorial director Bill Menezes asks precisely the right question of the leading conservative talk radio outlet — “Who is going to hold Clear Channel and [station management] Kris Olinger and Lee Larson accountable for this pattern of irresponsible dialogue on the Denver radio stations under their charge?”
And that pattern of irresponsible dialogue? It’s quite well-documented according to Menezes:
As usual, Olinger and Larson have been mum on this issue, much as they were when KOA’s ‘Gunny Bob’ Newman called for stripping basic constitutional rights from Muslim immigrants – including those who are U.S. citizens – solely on the basis of their religion, and when KHOW’s Peter Boyles repeatedly has used falsehoods and ethnic smears to discuss immigrants. Unfortunately, broadcasts such as this and Limbaugh’s call for riots in Denver can have real-world consequences.
It’s not surprising that Colorado state Rep. Kathleen Curry received a wave of threats and hate e-mails after imposing House rules of decorum on Rep. Douglas Bruce for his bigoted immigration-related remarks; the people making these anonymous threats are subjected with alarmingly frequency to messages of intolerance and bigotry regarding immigration and immigrants on the Denver Clear Channel radio stations whose signals that blanket our state.