I watch Glenn Beck’s show (or as much as I can stand) on a daily basis. Every day it’s kinda racist with Beck regularly extolling the virtues of his big hero Martin Luther King (once & still accused falsely of being a communist because a few of his supporters were communist) while accusing Barack Obama of being a communist because a few of his supporters are (not) communist.


If time permitted, I’d analyze the subtle and overt racist layers of Beck’s show every day. Someone really should. However, occasionally Beck says something so out of bounds that it demands a response. Here’s what he said on Friday:

“Special interest! What planet have I landed on? Did I slip through a wormhole in the middle of the night and this looks like America? It’s like the damn ‘Planet of the Apes.’ Nothing makes sense! The guy who’s helped destroy all these pensions, Andy Stern, is now on the financial oversight committee. Is this who we want to take advice from?

“The unions who have collapsed all of the businesses, who have collapsed all of their pensions, they are bankrupting everything they touch, and we go to them and we say, yes, tell me, what should we do? It’s like any marital tips from Tiger Woods.”

I’ve come to see Beck as fairly intelligent if quite un-educated (by his own admission, he’s educating himself and his audience). These racist associations are purposeful. He knew exactly what he was doing in evoking Tiger Woods (a black man with a preference for young white women who aren’t his wife) and Planet of the Apes. Beyond calling you, me and the entire Obama Administration monkeys — there’s another layer you need to know.

From Devona Walker at AlterNet:

You might remember the original Planet of the Apes. It came out in 1968 and was based on the French novel “La planète des Singes” by Pierre Boulle. It was written as a science-fictionalized account on one possible outcome if Black Nationalism did succeed in the U.S. In the film, Charlton Heston, a white astronaut, crashes his aircraft on a primitive yet futuristic society where apes run the world and humans are intellectually inferior and enslaved species. In the Planet of the Apes, humans cannot even speak. In ape society, there is a very specific class system, gorillas as police, military, and hunters; the orangutans as administrators, politicians and lawyers; and the chimpanzees as intellectuals and scientists.

The subtext of the Planet of the Apes, whether novel or film, has never been questioned. It’s not just science fiction but social commentary and Glenn Beck knew exactly the coded comparison he was making.

At this point, I really don’t know why Beck even bothers coding it anymore. Why doesn’t he just come out and say it. “I don’t like this N-word running the country, and you shouldn’t like it either, because he’s a dirty N-world and all us hard-working white folks know that N-words can’t be trusted.”

She said it better than I did. I’m not sure how Beck manages to hold back his burning desire to call Obama a nigger, but I’m waiting for it to slip out — any day now. Here’s Boyce Watkins with whom I also agree:

While Beck’s outrageous words (it was no accident that he compared Obama to an ape, which is highly offensive to black people) may gain him attention right now, he must also realize that he loses credibility with each ridiculous statement. I find myself less and less shocked by anything he says, and I hardly consider him to be a serious political figure.

Additionally, his ironic comparison of Obama’s America to ‘Planet of the Apes’ is interesting in that it seems to imply that he feels our nation has (as in the movie) shifted roles, where the apes are running the world and the humans are being subjected to their abuses.

Beck reflects the sentiments of many white Americans, who believe that a nation being run by black people is going to turn into a zoo.

This is your Tea Party in action. They feel threatened — and don’t know why and therefore need to project onto Obama their racist fantasies of Nazis and Afro-Leninism (whatever that’s supposed to be).

Glenn Beck — I know you read this blog and so, I’m going to speak to you directly now. It will take 10,000 decent shows highlighting African-American history in a positive way to wipe out one instance of calling Barack Obama an ape for us to even consider you as anything but the most virulent racist on the airwaves today. There’s a new Grand Wizard in town — and it’s you.

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