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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Lies So Deep Even Good People Fall Prey

Ta-Nehisi Coates is not one of the flame throwers on the left. While I don't agree with him on many policy issues, I have found him to be one of the more reasonable left-wing bloggers. But even Coates got caught up in the fabrications spread about Rush Limbaugh.

Coates wrote a post today, One Last Word On Rush, arguing that Limbaugh was denied an NFL ownership opportunity not because Limbaugh was conservative, but because he's a "white populist." One key piece of evidence? Limbaugh's alleged believe that slavery had some merit.

The significance of that allegation warranted an "update" to his post, at the urging of a commenter, so that Limbaugh's statement could be seen in its full context.

UPDATE: A commenter below rightfully notes that that Limbaugh quote deserves it's full context:

"I mean, let's face it, we didn't have slavery in this country for over 100 years because it was a bad thing. Quite the opposite: 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." [3/14/03]

The implication in my post is that Rush was defending slavery. That isn't what he said, and I was wrong for implying it....But not wrong for banning the dude who pointed it out :)

Of course, the referenced statement was one of the fabricated allegations against Limbaugh which had been exposed as a lie in full force all over the internet the day before. But Coates fell for it.

To his credit, Coates ran the following second update:

UPDATE #2: It's completely fabricated. Context isn't the issue. He never said it. I should have checked it before attributing it to him. I apologize to Rush Limbaugh.
The good news is that Coates was honest enough to recognize and apologize for the error. [The error need have taken place, since the link to the quoted language in the first Update itself pointed out that the source was questionable.]

The bad news is that these pernicious lies perpetuated by bad people take on a life of their own, consuming even good people along the way.

Update: For an example of smears being spread, see Limbaugh as Hitler

Related Posts:
No Sanctuary Cities for Conservatives
Al Sharpton for NFL Commissioner
An Allergic Reaction To The Race Card

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1 comment:

  1. Apology be damned. He only apologized to protect his own credibility as he was busted posting a blog on a proven hoax.The truth is however that he preferred the lie.
    This is like the Rathergate incident. The quote was fake but accurate. He won't let the fact that he has no evidence of racism interfere with his opinion of Rush as a racist.