RUSH: Now, folks, Snerdley told me that he can’t wait for the audio sound bites that I talked about in the opening hour of the program where the media all over this country on the day after Christmas and the week after Christmas was totally absorbed with my commends on Idris Elba, the black British actor being positioned as the next actor to play James Bond when Daniel Craig’s contract expires after the next one, not the one they’re currently filming, but one more. And of course what I said was, the totality of what I said was, why do we want to blur these lines? James Bond is a fictional character created by a real man named Ian Fleming. He’s white. He’s Scottish. He wasn’t black.
And then I furthermore said, let’s look at it the other way around. Let’s say that some Hollywood bigwig wants to do a biography movie The Life and Times of Barack Obama and cast Mel Gibson, what do you think the reaction to that would be? And playing Michelle (My Belle) Obama would be Gwyneth Paltrow, what do you think the reaction would be? And I said to Snerdley, “I don’t want to play these sound bites because all it is is the media calling me a racist,” and I said, “frankly, Mr. Snerdley, my audience is tired of me being called a racist. They know I’m not one, and they hate it. And they’re not amused by it.”
He said, “That’s true, but there’s a life lesson.” There is in a way. Not a life lesson, but there’s an object lesson in this that — I won’t go ahead and try to make it. We’ve got a montage here. How many of these things are there? There are two of them. And the first one is a montage, and this montage runs 47 seconds, and it spans the dates December 24th through December 29th. New York to LA, Boston to New Orleans, Chicago to Dallas, to San Francisco, this was the big news over the holidays.
REPORTER: The harsh comments Rush Limbaugh had about Idris Elba.
REPORTER: Leave it to Rush Limbaugh to stir up some controversy.
REPORTER: Limbaugh insists James Bond must be white.
REPORTER: Rush Limbaugh sparking controversy.
REPORTER: If Rush Limbaugh has his way, the next one will not be Idris Elba.
REPORTER: Rush Limbaugh is once again inciting outrage.
REPORTER: Rush Limbaugh has come out against having a black James Bond.
REPORTER: James Bond is white and should always be played by a white actor; so saith Rush Limbaugh.
REPORTER: It made Rush Limbaugh mad.
REPORTER: “James Bond was white, is white, and always will be white.” Those are words from Rush Limbaugh.
REPORTER: Predictable reaction from radio provocateur Rush Limbaugh.
REPORTER: He’s gotta thank Rush Limbaugh, ’cause if Rush didn’t put it out there, there wouldn’t be this much heat around it.
RUSH: Okay. Now, I know you all don’t like hearing this garbage. I know that you get ticked off when you hear these no-names and these numskulls running around just every one of them saying the same thing, every one of them sounding the same, every one of them as blind and brain-dead as the rest, with this incessant criticism of racism. I don’t play this to laugh at it, but I’ll tell you something here. Is it racist to suggest that James Bond is a white character created by Ian Fleming? It’s not racist to suggest this. We’re so far off the beaten path, we can’t even talk about it.
Eric Holder runs around (imitating Holder), “We don’t have any courage in this country. We got a bunch of cowards afraid to talk about race.” I’m not, despite what happens to me when I do. But there’s no racism intended here. I have no bias whatever against Idris Elba. In fact, I think he’s a great actor. It isn’t even about him. This is about this gal Amy Pascal who thinks that Idris Elba would be a great James Bond, and we know why she says it. She’s trying to buy off Al Sharpton. She’s trying to buy off any of the other hustlers because she’s in trouble because of the Sony leak.
But it is not racist to make an observation like this. And I know that there’s The Wiz, which is the black version of the Wizard of Oz and I know that there’s now a black version of Annie, Little Orphan Annie and all that. But I’m merely attesting to the fact that James Bond is a real character, a real character created by a real guy, and modeled, by the way, after somebody named James Bond, if you must know the truth, a friend of Ian Fleming’s. He was not an agent, but other characteristics of his friend. It’s an invention, obviously. But this idea that this is all racism?
In order to make the point, which these people, I guarantee you, none of them knew the entirety of what I said because not one of these people actually ever heard me say this. They all heard this or probably read it from one place. They are the last thing that you would associate with being reporters. They’re not curious. They’re not interested in the truth. They are the ones looking for easy comments. They’re the ones looking for easy controversy, by invoking me. They’re the lazy ones. They’re the ones trying to get noticed.
I have 47 seconds here and every damn one of these people had the same comment. There’s no uniqueness, no originality in these people. They’re just a bunch of followers. I simply asked an associated question: Would it be accepted if the movie of The Life and Times of Barack Obama was cast, pick your white guy. I picked Mel Gibson because he’s universally reviled in Hollywood right now, just to tweak ’em, but pick anybody, pick any white actor, pick Clooney. Clooney would be honored, by the way, to do it. Pick Clooney.
Do you think that the Al Sharptons of the world would sit idly by and applaud it? So here’s the question. We know that it wouldn’t be acceptable. We know that it would be immediately attacked. Why is it universally proper and okay and justified to attack a white actor portraying a black guy, but when a black actor portrays an obvious white character, we’re supposed to say, “Hey, yeah, that’s fine and cool,” and anybody that says, “No, we shouldn’t do that,” is immediately branded a racist.
This is the kind of thing, folks, that most people won’t dare say ’cause they don’t want to have to deal with idiots like these TV people making comments about ’em. I frankly — and it may be to my detriment — don’t care. A lot of people, “You know, you ought to care, Rush, you ought to go after these people. I mean, they’re out there.” I don’t care. It never has — well, the first two years I didn’t know how to deal with it, it bothered me, but after that, I don’t care. Especially when you consider the source.
The idea that there is racism behind this is, frankly, absurd. This is how they shut people up. This is why, I contend to you, that with the right candidate, conservative candidate, you would find overwhelming bust-out support for that conservative candidate throughout and across a cross spectrum of this country. Now, here’s the next sound bite, and this is WPIX-TV eyeball 11 morning news in New York. The fill in coanchor Craig Treadway and the fill-in anchorette Lisa Mateo decided to discuss this.
TREADWAY: He also said that it’s racist to probably point this out. You think?
MATEO: Yeah, I think so. Idris, I think, would be a great Bond. I would go run and see that. I’m a big fan.
TREADWAY: You could punch Limbaugh in the face.
MATEO: There you go!
RUSH: So let’s now inflict a little violence on your host. It’d be perfectly fine to go punch Limbaugh in the face. And when I said it’s probably racist to point this out, I was being facetious but I said it with full knowledge of how these clowns were gonna accept it because they’re mind-numbed robots. They are programmed, however it’s happened in their lives, to automatically react this way, to the point that you cannot have any kind of a conversation about this.
It’s like I told you earlier, a friend of mine sent me an e-mail over the weekend. I think it was during the Bengals-Indianapolis Colts game, or as Phil Simms says, the Colts. Yeah. It was the Bengals and the Colts, as Phil Simms says. And this guy sends me a note, says, “You know, Rush, is it racist to say I don’t like female sideline reporters like this?” And I said probably. He said sexist. I said in this day and age you’re not allowed to say that. If you say that you don’t like female sideline reporters, then no question, depending who you are if you say it, it’s definitely sexist and anti-women if you say that. He said, “But I don’t dislike women. I love women, probably too much.” Well, if you love women probably too much, then you gotta have no problem with wherever you find ’em, sir.
He said, “I don’t know. I can’t help but think I’m looking at groupies.” Well, you said it, sir, not I. But it’s the same thing. He was afraid to even talk about it. That’s the point, because of the labels.
I’ve just been handed something. What is this? Oh, yeah. By the way, this is nothing new. This is back in 1990. It’s the New York Times: “Actors’ Equity denied permission yesterday for the English actor Jonathan Pryce,” who, by the way, played a Bond villain. He also played Henry Kravis in Barbarians at the Gate on HBO with James Garner. “Actors’ Equity denied permission yesterday for the English actor Jonathan Pryce to appear on Broadway next spring in the role of the Eurasian pimp that he created in the hit London musical ‘Miss Saigon.”’
In the London production, he did portray a Eurasian pimp, but the Actors’ Equity denied permission for him to play that role on Broadway in New York because he’s not Asian. They had to go out and find a real Asian to play the pimp because he wasn’t. But when it comes to the other way around, “No problem. I’d love to see it. Why, yeah, it’d be cool,” whatever.
RUSH: How about Matt Damon as Shaft? Quick. What was Shaft’s first name? John Shaft. That’s right. Way to go, Mr. Snerdley. He was a bad… Isaac Hayes characterized it. I will go no further. You rest easy in there, Dawn. How about Matt Affleck, that will cover both those guys. Matt Affleck as Shaft. (laughing)