Thursday, May 28, 2009


Rush Limbaugh got a lot of attention for calling Sonia Sotomayor a "reverse racist" (after which Newt Gingrich effectively said "ditto").

But Limbaugh went one better, or worse, yesterday -- he compared Republicans to brutalized and disempowered seekers of civil rights:

Conservatism is an oppressed minority today. The Republican Party is an oppressed minority.... When you're an oppressed minority, what do you do? You willingly go to the back of the bus and you willingly shut up and you willingly don't make waves. If ever a civil rights movement was needed in America, it is for the Republican Party. If ever we needed to start marching for freedom and constitutional rights, it's for the Republican Party. The Republican Party is today's oppressed minority, and it knows how to behave as one. It shuts up. It doesn't cross bridges; it doesn't run into the Bull Connors of the Democrat Party; it is afraid of the fire hoses and the dogs, it's compliant.

The Republican Party today has become totally complacent. They are an oppressed minority; they know their position; they know their place. They go to the back of the bus. They don't use the right restroom and the right drinking fountain, and they shut up....

Barack Obama thinks of himself as a member of an oppressed minority, but he's not taking it, he's fighting back. He's going to go so far as to desecrate the Constitution to address his grievances. The Republican Party, they've mastered it, they've got it down pat. Washington, DC, may as well be -- (interruption) what, Snerdley? Washington, DC, is the Old South for Republicans, if you want to draw the analogy....

(Audio below, via Media Matters.)

Republicans feel that they're the only legitimate Americans, so they feel entitled to all the power available; it's their due, as far as they're concerned -- even the power of being able to say you're from a group that's been oppressed. They're jealous of those they perceive as having that power.

And, beyond that, well, they're just turning into the '60s and '70s left, in ways that alienated a lot of people back in those days. They call Obama a "fascist." They get giddy holding big protests using live pigs as props. And now here's Limbaugh trying to appropriate black oppression, a tactic I certainly remember from my childhood:

However much the grievances of those white '60s and '70s lefties were legitimate, they weren't black. They weren't entitle to wrap themselves in the history of blackness. And Limbaugh, God help us, isn't either.

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