Rush On Michael Steele: He's Alright, But He's Not Real...

I've been pretty hard on Michael Steele for his abuse of Ebonics. But I think his most recent sonning courtesy of Rush Limbaugh needs to be put in perspective:

"My intent was not to go after Rush - I have enormous respect for Rush Limbaugh," Mr. Steele told The Politico. "I was maybe a little bit inarticulate. There was no attempt on my part to diminish his voice or his leadership."

I'm not offended that Steele is kow-towing to Rush. I'm offended that Steele would wrap himself in the garb on hip-hop, and then apologize to Rush.

Man listen: The first rule for establishing "Off The Hook Urban-Suburban Hip-Hop Strategies" is if you gonna dis a mofo, then dis him. Don't come out the box quoting "How You Like Me Now," and then go and apologizes to the guy who you just dissed.

Could you imagine Moe Dee apologizing to LL? Kris apologizing to Shan? Shante apologizing to the Real Roxanne? Hillary Duff apologizing Lindsay Lohan?

Come on man. You ain't no wiling-out-for-the-night-fist-thrower:

Mr. Steele called Mr. Limbaugh after the radio host belittled Mr. Steele on his show, questioning his authority and saying the new Republican leader was off "to a shaky start."

"It's time, Mr. Steele, for you to go behind the scenes and start doing the work that you were elected to do instead of trying to be some talking head media star, which you're having a tough time pulling off," Mr. Limbaugh said, in a transcript of his remarks he posted on his Web site.

"Mr. Steele: You are head of the R.N.C.," Mr. Limbaugh said. "You are not head of the Republican Party. Tens of millions of conservatives and Republicans have nothing to do with the R.N.C. and right now they want nothing to do with it."

Shorter Rush Limbaugh--"Don't make me have to call your name out\Your crew is featherweight\My talk-show will make you levitate..."

UPDATE: We'll re-open later. It's tough being popular. I like being the geek so much more.

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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

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