We’ll admit it – when Donovan McNabb’s agent, Fletcher Smith, released a statement condemning boxer Bernard Hopkins’ nonsensical questioning of McNabb’s blackness, we thought that was it. Smith said all that had to be said (since McNabb elected to remain silent), pundits got in their shots at Hopkins – controversy over.
It was just adorable of us to believe that.
Because now, no less a personality than Rush Limbaugh has added his take on the controversy. Rush, if you’ll remember, has something of a checkered past involving McNabb himself, considering he proclaimed back in 2003 that members of the media collectively overrated McNabb as part of some great desire to see a black quarterback succeed. Now, though, like every other human except for Bernard Hopkins, Rush is pro-McNabb:
“I said nothing close to what Bernard Hopkins was saying. I never said a word about McNabb and blackness. I was talking about the media from start to finish….This poor guy cannot, he cannot catch a break. And it’s disgruntled African Americans that are jumping down his case, about the way he was raised? It is horrible, it is distasteful. His parents are out there having to defend the way they raised him, and all they tried to do was give him opportunity after opportunity, expose he and his brother to various things. It’s just amazing to watch this.”
Putting aside the self-defense (not to mention that the basis for Limbaugh’s entire 2003 statement, though he did couch it in media terms, was “McNabb and blackness”) and the fact that we’re not quite comfortable with the idea of Rush Limbaugh as an arbiter of what’s tastreful and what isn’t, and we can only say that, in his larger point (this might be tough to get out)…
…Rush is right.
It ought to say a lot, that Hopkins’ comments were met with with so much vehement disagreement from all corners, that Limbaugh’s reaction isn’t to try and say the craziest, most attention-getting thing possible, but to simply lament how McNabb “cannot catch a break.” Of course, this being Rush Limbaugh, we can’t discount the possibility he knew that simply taking McNabb’s side would be the most attention-getting maneuver, but frankly, that doesn’t matter all that much. Let the record show that Rush Limbaugh is on the right side of this debate…and let this hopefully, finally, be the end of it.