Rush Limbaugh

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RUSH: Jeff in Omaha. I’m glad you called. Welcome to the EIB Network, sir.

CALLER: It’s a real honor to talk to you.

RUSH: Thank you.

CALLER: Hey, I just wanted to further the point you were making with the Rams deal that’s going on and what a joke it is and they’re saying that, you know, you can’t own a team because of some, you know, quote, unquote, controversial things that you said even though everything you do say is a part of your free speech. And, you know, with you being controversial —

RUSH: No, wait just now, wait a second. They are saying I said things I didn’t say.

CALLER: Right. But even like the McNabb thing, I mean, that is your opinion, and —

RUSH: Right.

CALLER: — and their opinion is not the same, most of your stuff I agree, and that’s my opinion, but, you know, why don’t they start dealing with the facts like, you know, as you were talking about Michael Vick with the dogfighting, and now he’s back into the NFL. Pacman Jones. You know, Ricky Williams. Shawne Merriman. You know, how do all these people who are actual criminals and that’s a fact, you know, how come they can come back into the NFL but yet you aren’t supposed to own a team because of some things that you said? And I keep hearing people say that, you know, it’s a privilege to be an NFL team owner, and it’s a privilege to play in the NFL, it’s not a right. Like, well, talk to these people who are committing crimes but yet, you know, they just somehow end up back in the NFL, but somebody wants to own a team that they don’t agree with and there’s a big problem now. Where are those people at now?

RUSH: Well, I’m in a position here where I can’t address — I’d love to — but I can’t address the thrust of your comments here. Well, maybe I can because I have said something that they are taking out of context, the Bloods and Crips comment, maybe I can explain that. But, look, nobody is clean and pure as the wind-driven snow, and everybody gets second chances. People pay the price when they pay their debt, if they are convicted of something, you wipe the slate clean. I don’t have any desire to deny people second chances and that kind of thing. What you’re really talking about here is the hypocrisy of things. Hypocrisy is all over the place. It’s always there. But it is the reality. It is what it is. And that has to be dealt with. And the way to deal with it is not so much point it out as to recognize it as an obstacle and how to deal with it. And those are the kinds of things I can’t discuss, but let me take the occasion of your call to explain the Bloods and Crips comment, because these guys who are now admitting, ‘Okay, maybe we can’t source those quotes about Limbaugh and James Earl Ray and slavery, but he said Bloods and Crips! He said Bloods and Crips!’

They’re trying to get anything else to continue the narrative here that I am some subhuman species with no rights to exist anywhere outside this radio studio and within these radio waves. I believe the comment’s from 2007, and I believe the comments were made to a phone call, I had a phone call — I think — I’d have to check the transcript of that date, which I’ve not done, but my memory is, it was a playoff game in San Diego between the Chargers and the Patriots, and the Patriots had a fourth down with a very few seconds left in the game, fourth and ball game, and the Chargers held ’em. Chargers win. Chargers were leading. Then all of a sudden a ref throws a flag, 15 yards or something for taunting, unsportsmanlike conduct, some Chargers DB had gotten in the face of some Patriots player, was doing a ‘you can’t diss me’ act and so forth, and it lost the game for the Chargers. And I praised the official for throwing the flag. See, I love the game. I love the National Football League.

We all have Walter Mitty in us. We all wish we could do something that we can’t. Some people get paralyzed by those desires and continue to try to do things they can’t. A man has got to know his limitations. But at the same time, you gotta have a never-quit attitude. But at some point, I mean if you’re not qualified to play in the NFL, you shouldn’t ruin your life dreaming about it. Go do what you’re good at. I would love to be able to do it. Now, I’ve always wanted to be able to do it. I admire and respect the talent that those few Americans have to qualify for the National Football League, and the game is about what happens on the field. The NFL is like any other business, it’s got off-field problems. Every business has employees that have problems and troubles when they’re away from the office. NFL’s no different there. But the NFL wants to keep control of the game. It’s the product on the field. And they cannot allow the tendency, the integrity of the game to be blown up by whatever cultural trends are going on. So the Bloods and Crips comment I think I said sometimes the game looks like Bloods and Crips without the weapons.

Now, we had Mercury Morris who was I guess on CNN a couple days ago say, ‘I know what he’s talking about and he’s right, I know exactly what he’s talking about.’ Mercury Morris played for the Dolphins back in the Don Shula era. My comment could easily be taken as criticism of players. It was criticism of that kind of — it was totally unnecessary — it lost the ball game. Lost the ball game all for the purpose of strutting around. And what it was, folks, was criticism of a mind-set. Regardless what happens here I am a fan of the National Football League. I devote my Sundays to it. I travel to stadiums to be part of it. It’s fun being there in person. I want to continue to be a fan. I want that game to be up on the pedestal I’ve put it, and I want the players to be on the pedestal that I’ve put them. The players are the game. You want the best people playing the game you can get in the league, and that’s a hard job to find ’em, scouting and all that, the draft. It’s fascinating to me because everybody is trying to pick who they think are the best, and some people are better at picking those players than others, why one team’s better than another, traditionally over the years and so on.

But that comment was more of a, ‘Oh, no, jeez, don’t let this happen to the game.’ I don’t want to see it. I have the game on a pedestal. I have the people who play it on a pedestal. I don’t want that to change. So I was criticizing a mind-set that is destructive, and it was not helpful. It was not racial. Bloods and Crips makes it look racial, the way I chose to describe it. I could have perhaps chosen a different term.


RUSH: By the way, folks, I’m actually on the same page with the commissioner of the National Football League, Roger Goodell, on this aspect I just spoke of. He’s trying to protect the game, too. I’ve got a stack of stories here of the way the commissioner has reacted to even off-field disciplinary problems. I’m not going to mention any teams, I’m not going to mention the stories, but I’ve got a bunch of stacks here. The people involved in the game love it and they want to protect it, and that’s me.

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