It’s official: Rush Limbaugh has withdrawn as a minority participant in a group that is trying to buy the St. Louis Rams. This follows opposition to Rush’s participation from Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and, shamefully, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Such opposition, in turn, was fueled by false claims that Limbaugh has made various racist statements in the past.
The most ridiculous of the statements falsely attributed to Rush was this one:
Slavery built the South. I’m not saying we should bring it back; I’m just saying it had its merits. For one thing, the streets were safer after dark.
Anyone who has ever listened to Limbaugh would immediately recognize this as a hoax; in fact, it was made up out of whole cloth by a little-known left-wing blogger. But it was reported as fact by news outlets that didn’t bother to verify their facts. CNN was especially blameworthy in this regard; it vouched for the blogger-fabrication:
The irony runs deep: Keith Olbermann, who unlike Limbaugh is actually a hatemonger, is employed as an NFL commentator.
There are many more conservatives than liberals in the United States, but liberals nevertheless continue to make progress in their effort to delegitimize conservatism. The successful slander and demonization of Rush Limbaugh is a misfortune; not primarily for him, but for all of us.
Andy McCarthy has related thoughts.
UPDATE: See also Mark Steyn’s comments, including this conclusion:
PS: Can Rush buy the St Louis Rams if he gets Roman Polanski to front the deal?
A final observation, perhaps too obvious to require saying: It’s no coincidence that Democratic Party outlets like CNN had to dredge up fake quotes to make their case. Nothing Rush actually said would do the trick, even though he’s been on the radio three hours a day, five days a week, for more than twenty years. That really tells you all you need to know.
ONE LAST UPDATE: It is worth noting, as a kind of macabre footnote, that CNN found it worthwhile to “fact check” Saturday Night Live when that program had the temerity to ridicule CNN’s President, The One. Maybe CNN could become a respected news organization if it tried to fact check news stories as well as comedy skits, starting with–is this too much to ask?–its own broadcasts.