A bunch of others beat me to it (1
so I did not blog about Limbaugh’s offensive diatribe against Michael
J. Fox’s advertisement. But Limbaugh’s latests statements are
sufficiently offensive that I want to take a moment to respond.
As described in the Herald
Limbaugh said Fox was simply playing his latest role.
“He is exaggerating the effects of the disease,” he told his listeners.
“He’s moving all around and shaking, and it’s purely an act. This is
really shameless of Michael J. Fox. Either he didn’t take his
medication or he’s acting.”
The Herald Sun reports that he later apologized:
One of America’s leading talk show hosts has
apologised to actor Michael J. Fox for saying he was shamelessly faking
his Parkinson’s disease symptoms.
But high-rating conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh said he still
believed Fox was a biased spruiker for the Democrat party on stem cell
But, in a classic case of political doublespeak, Limbaugh also defended
“I stand by what I said,” he said. “I take back none
of what I said. I
wouldn’t rephrase it any differently. It is what I believe. It is what
I think. It is what I found to be true.”
The Guardian reports
that Limbaugh was “forced” to issue the apology:
Limbaugh was forced to apologise to the actor after
he accused Fox of exaggerating the symptoms of his illness in an
election television advert. “He’s either off his medication or acting.
He is an actor after all,” Limbaugh said in his broadcast on Monday.
Hours later the talkshow host was forced to retract. “I will bigly,
hugely admit that I was wrong,” he said.
They do not say how they know he was “forced” to apologize,
but it seems likely that it was not a sincere apology.
In any case, Limbaugh’s remark was not only rude; it was irrelevant.
It contributes nothing to the debate on stem cells, for
Limbaugh to make a personal attack on Mr. Fox.