Reverse racism

Reverse racism

Boston has its own mini-version of the Rush Limbaugh “racist-remark” flap. Last week, a gorilla escaped from a zoo in Boston and was eventually caught near a bus stop. Two radio hosts on a sports talk station remarked that the gorilla was a “Metco gorilla” on his way to Lexington. Metco is a program by which minority students from the inner city are bused to tony suburbs for school. Thus the world came tumbling down on the two hosts, John Dennis and Gerry Callahan.

Now, the remark was dumb, especially considering the racially charged environment we live in. But the over-reaction is just as dumb. Like I said yesterday about the Rush Limbaugh episode, we have a culture steeped in a victim mentality. Dennis has apologized on air and been forced to grovel at the altar of political correctness for his mistake. He said he has to examine himself to determine what underlying motives lay hidden in heart when he said that.

The two hosts have been suspended for two weeks by the radio station, WEEI. The Boston Globe articles says, “The radio station called the remarks “insensitive and inappropriate’ and said in a statement yesterday that it hopes Metco students and parents will begin to heal.” Begin to heal? What happened to teaching kids that “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”?

And what happened to the sense of humor? We’re all sitting around just waiting for someone to offend us so we can go into high dudgeon and stalk around with moral indignation.

Finally, there’s always the bit of reverse racism thrown in at the end.

Metco executive director Jean McGuire said she has tried to get the station to address a talk radio culture that she calls a “white male club.”

“That’s what’s wrong. There’s no one who says, “Who are you kidding? You need to shut up. You can’t talk like that,’” McGuire said. “It’s more than WEEI. It’s the whole culture of talk radio. It’s reprehensible.”

And so McGuire gets to say that white men are racist, that listeners of talk radio are racist. Nice double standard.

Written by
Domenico Bettinelli
  • You are assuming that the comment was comapring blacks and gorillas. Are you a mind reader? Do you know the thoughts of John Dennis? Can you read my heart and my mind? No, you can’t. There is no racism in my heart and mind and there’s no way for you to tell me otherwise. That’s just a liberal psycho-babble cop-out to make everyone feel guilty for something they haven’t done, to feel guilty for the sins of previous generations.

    This had nothing to do with Metco and everything to do with hair-trigger reactions to perceived slights. What’s important to these people is not whether any insult was intended, but whether they themselves want to be offended.

    By the way, when was the last time you corrected someone for stereotyping of Irish or Italians or Asians or even Christians? But then, none of them are a protected class.

  • Agreed Dan. I don’t listen to them either and I find Callahan especially to be fairly grating. But my point wasn’t whether I felt sorry for them or not, but whether the treatment they received for this comment was deserved.

    In fact, you bring up another point. I haven’t heard similar outrage for their comments about the Catholic Church. Another double standard?

  • Uh…there’s more than one Todd, right? wink

    In all seriousness, the talk-guys comments were worse than racist…they were (as one of the pair admitted) really stupid.

    Then again, I always thought the show was really stupid.

    But we don’t, as a society, “punish” people for stupidity. The owners of the station exercised their right—and it was *only* their right, not ours, not METCO’s, and certainly not the Boston City Council—to mete out the punishment. The only power we have—and should have—is to vote with our dials. Or ad bucks, like Blue Cross did.

    Anyway, in my opinion, the Double-Really Stupid Award has got to go to Jean McGuire.

    Jean? You might consider the “need to shut up” yourself. Again, just my opinion.