Is Glenn Beck a racist right-wing nut job? Is he “Satan’s mentally challenged younger brother”? Glenn Beck has made his career as a talking head on CNN, Fox News and his nationally syndicated radio show by being loud-mouthed and making outrageous (and often completely inaccurate) accusations and comparisons. Below, we compile his ten most racist moments and quotes.
1. Glenn Beck loves to call other people racists. As the resident arbiter of good taste on Fox & Friends, Beck called President Barack Obama a racist in July 2009: “This president, I think, has exposed himself over and over again as a guy who has a deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture… I’m not saying he doesn’t like white people, I’m saying he has a problem. This guy is, I believe, a racist.”
2. No one is safe from Beck’s wrath, living or dead. In a history lesson segment on The Glenn Beck Show in August 2010, Beck had it out for none other than Charles Darwin, calling him the “father of modern day racism.” Charles Darwin is famous for his theories on evolution and natural selection, credited with the concept of survival of the fittest. While Beck offered absolutely no explanation of this incendiary opinion and strange interpretation of Darwin’s research, we can only assume Beck means to imply his own or others’ ideologies about what groups are more the “fit” to “survive”.
3. Glenn Beck also likes to speak on behalf of the Founding Fathers and their intentions. In late 2009, he discussed the Three-Fifths Clause in the constitution, which counted slaves as only three-fifths of a person. Beck argues that the clause was written as a tool to abolish slavery, not perpetuate it. “They put [the Three-Fifths Clause] in there because if slaves in the South were counted as full human beings, they could never abolish slavery.” Historically speaking (using, you know, facts) that claim is completely false.
4. When Glenn Beck interviewed Representative Keith Ellison, the first Muslim U.S. Congressman, in November of 2006, Beck revealed his incredibly ignorant and narrow point of view regarding practicing American Muslims: “I have been nervous about this interview with you because what I feel like saying is, ‘Sir, prove to me that you are not working with our enemies.’ … And I know you’re not. I’m not accusing you of being an enemy, but that’s the way I feel, and I think a lot of Americans will feel that way.”
5. A subscription to Glenn Beck’s website reveals a veritable cornucopia of bigotry. The website includes access to comedy segments that were either broadcast on or written for his nationally-syndicated radio program. A mock radio jingle for a species of fish formerly known as the “jewfish”. The jingle contains the lyrics, “Close your eyes and try to picture a great big friendly jewfish — That is, unless you’re Jewish. Oh yeah, and that reminds us: Jewfish get real stinky of you leave them in the car.”
6. Also on Glenn Beck’s website are radio segments listing “rejected NCAA team names”, which include the “Los Angeles Limp-Wrists”, the “New Jersey Jumpin’ Jews”, and the “Atlanta Murdering Rampage of Savage Rapin’ Injuns.”
7. The content that really takes the cake on Beck’s website is a satirical (but no less offensive) parody song about the “New KKK”. The song contains lyrics discussing the “close-to-painful murdering of the dark people”.
8. Glenn Beck has had a lot to say about US immigration law, none of which has been terribly kind towards Mexican immigrants. In March of 2006, Beck characterized Mexico as a “country that has been overtaken by lawbreakers from the bottom to the top.” He criticized supporters attending immigration rights rallies, saying that “what [they’re] protesting for is to have lawbreakers come here.” When asked to clarify these remarks, Beck said he “pretty much stand[s] by” his previous statements that “Mexico is run by nothing but criminals” on his radio show the next day.
9. Just one month after he characterized Mexico as lawless and criminal – and received significant backlash for his negative generalization of a complex issue – Beck listed the only three reasons a Mexican would come to the United States on his CNN show: “One, they’re terrorists; two, they’re escaping the law; or three, they’re hungry. They can’t make a living in their own dirtbag country.”
10. On the September 9, 2005 broadcast of his radio program, Glenn Beck discussed his “hatred” not only for 9/11 victims’ families, but also for victims of Hurricane Katrina. “It took me about a year to start hating the 9/11 victims’ families… I’m so sick of them because they’re always complaining… We did our best for them… But the second thought I had when I saw these people and they had to shut down the Astrodome and lock it down [because of rioting while supplies were being distributed], I thought: I didn’t think I could hate victims faster than the 9-11 victims.” He continues to say, “This is a 90,000-square-mile disaster site, New Orleans is 181 square miles… And that’s all we’re hearing about, are the people in New Orleans. Those are the only ones we’re seeing on television are the scumbags… It’s just a small percentage of those who were left in New Orleans, or who decided to stay in New Orleans, and they’re getting all the attention.”
It sounds to me like Beck’s definition of ‘scumbag’ is poor, Black, and completely disenfranchised. Perhaps a better definition of ‘scumbag’ is Glenn Beck.