The flap over Rush Limbaugh's pitch to buy the Saint Louis Rams is one of those non-stories that occasionally consumes the blogosphere and cable news when pundits tire of actual news. The controversy, essentially, is about whether Rush Limbaugh is too racist to own part of a football team. Liberals tarred and feathered Limbaugh over inflammatory quotes, some of which turned out to be made up. Conservatives defended, weighing Rush's options for libel lawsuits and comparing him to Martin Luther King, Jr. But one conservative blogger, Rick Moran of Rightwing Nuthouse, provides a rare voice of reason. Moran, no fan of Rush, concedes he "can't stand him but hate[s[ the rank dishonesty and evocation of nauseating racial politics of some on the left even more." Moran asks, since when do the PC police care about the NFL?
But the real kicker in this brouhaha over Limbaugh's purported effort to become an NFL owner is the uproariously funny spectacle of NFL owners and players solemnly opining on Limbaugh's supposed divisive words and bad behavior.
When did the NFL become the gold standard of tolerance and diversity? And since when did the NFL Players Association and its nearly 200 members who have been charged with felonies in the last decade become the arbiter of moral wholesomeness?
The National Football League was the last major professional sports organization to hire a black coach. Art Shell was hired in 1988 to coach the Oakland Raiders. It took them 4 years to hire a second - Dennis Green of the Vikings. All told, there have been 10 African American coaches in the entire history of the league. That compares to 49 black coaches in NBA history and 22 in Major League baseball.
And these guys are worried about Limbaugh?
Moran went on to compare Rush's most controversial (actual) quotes with racially charged incidents in the NFL that failed to draw even half as much attention. While both sides of the debate were slinging mud, Moran defended Rush while conceding the radio host's faults. More importantly, the blogger did a better job of ferreting out real racism than many liberals did. In this predictable and unsubstantial partisan slap-fight, Moran made a legitimate and serious point about racism in the NFL.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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