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Jane Fonda and her feminist colleagues Gloria Steinem and Robin Morgan have weighed in on the Rush Limbaugh controversy. Their conclusion: The FCC should ban him from the public airwaves.
“Ironically, the misogyny Rush Limbaugh spewed for three days over Sandra Fluke was not much worse than his regular broadcast of sexist, racist and homophobic hate speech,” write the co-founders of the Women’s Media Center.
The authors cite four examples: In 2010, Limbaugh called female cabinet members “sex-retaries”; that same year, he called the National Organization for Women “a bunch of whores to liberalism”; in 2000, he said the NAACP “should have riot rehearsals”; and in the 1970s, while a music DJ operating under the name Jeff Christie, he told an African-American caller, “Take that bone out of your nose and call me back.”
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The three, writing at CNN.com, also liken Limbaugh to a Nazi war criminal.
“He promotes language that deliberately dehumanizes his targets,” they wrote. “Like the sophisticated propagandist Joseph Goebbels, he creates rhetorical frames — and the bigger the lie, the more effective — inciting listeners to view people they disagree with as subhumans.”
The three call it a “fitting time” for Limbaugh’s corporate partners, Clear Channel Communications and Premiere Radio Networks, to drop him. If they don’t, Fonda, Steinem and Morgan encourage readers to complain to the FCC.
“He is indeed constitutionally entitled to his opinions, but he is not constitutionally entitled to the people’s airwaves,” they write. “It’s time for the public to take back our broadcast resources. Limbaugh has had decades to fix his show. Now it’s up to us.”
Naturally, the reaction from the right has been swift, especially since the trio went back to the ’70s for an example of Limbaugh’s “hate speech.”
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“Here is what Jane Fonda was broadcasting into North Vietnam during her visit in 1972, while American troops were fighting and dying in Vietnam,” writes Dan Riehl at Breitbart.com, linking to Fonda’s famous war-protest broadcasts and photos.
“Using Fonda in an effort to stifle free speech is a tactic that drips with Hollywood irony,” writes James Hirsen for Newsmax.com, where he also notes Fonda’s visit to North Vietnam.
“Interestingly, while expressing disdain over the use of the term ‘femi-nazi,’ Fonda and her cohorts have illustrated why Rush’s coined phrase for radical feminists has a ring of truth to it, since they are choosing to follow in the footsteps of totalitarian dictators who seek to silence those with whom they disagree,” Hirsen writes.
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