Monday, December 15, 2008

Fighting back against radio hate...

Media Matters December 15, 2008

Dear Aurora ,

Media Matters for America recently released a damning new report documenting the inflammatory smears and hate-fueled speech of radio hosts throughout the country. Day after day, these hosts fill the airwaves with vicious attacks aimed at women, people of color, the poor, the LGBT community, and immigrants.

As part of Media Matters' ongoing effort to expose the incendiary commentary of these hosts, we've decided to highlight the topics and segments of the population they most frequently assail.

>> Sign up at for more information on how you can help fight back.

Among the most frequently targeted communities, immigrants figure prominently. The smears run the gamut from claiming undocumented Mexican immigrants "want to reconquer America" to laying the blame for the home-foreclosure crisis at the feet of the undocumented.

Here are just a few examples of the vitriol directed at immigrants from these conservative radio hosts:

  • G. Gordon Liddy smeared undocumented Mexican immigrants, claiming they "want to reconquer America, they say"
  • Summary: On his radio show, G. Gordon Liddy claimed that undocumented immigrants from Mexico come to the United States and "want to fly the Mexican flag" and "want to speak Spanish" instead of learning English. Liddy then stated: "They want to reconquer America, they say."
    - Listen to Clip

  • Michael Savage: "Illegal aliens" have "raped and disheveled" the Statue of Liberty
  • Summary: Discussing the Italian government's decision to deploy soldiers on city streets to combat violent crime allegedly committed by illegal immigrants, Michael Savage said: "So they've done there what we need to do here. We need to get our troops out of Iraq and put them on the streets of America to protect us from the scourge of illegal immigrants who are running rampant across America, killing our police for sport, raping, murdering like a scythe across America while the liberal psychos are telling us they come here to work." Savage added: "[Y]ou turn on the cable news, they're covering again a missing child. Not a missing country but a missing child. ... We hear about the rape of a woman, but not about the rape of the Statue of Liberty. The Statue of Liberty is crying, she's been raped and disheveled -- raped and disheveled by illegal aliens."
    - Listen to Clip

  • Savage: "We're getting refugees now who have never used a telephone, a toothbrush, or toilet paper. ... [T]hey never assimilate. And then their children become gang-bangers"
  • Summary: Michael Savage asserted on June 23: "We're getting refugees now who have never used a telephone, a toothbrush, or toilet paper. You're telling me they're going to assimilate? They will never assimilate. They come here and they bring their destitute ways to this country, and they never assimilate." He continued: "And then their children become gang-bangers. It is a disaster." Savage added that earlier immigrants to the U.S. "had used toilet paper and toothbrushes and they knew how to survive in this country. They took a job or they worked. They didn't come and sit and have 16 children and eat beetle nuts."
    - Listen to Clip

  • Conservative radio hosts claimed HUD said 5 million illegal immigrants were given subprime mortgages, despite HUD's reported denials
  • >Summary: Rush Limbaugh and KSFO's Lee Rodgers repeated a variation of the claim that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) gave "5 million illegal aliens" subprime loans that they have not paid back. Quinn & Rose's Jim Quinn also cited the 5 million statistic without citing a source for the figure. None of these radio hosts noted that HUD has reportedly stated that this statistic is false.

These radio hosts make a living off of unsubstantiated smears and outright attacks aimed at immigrants and Latinos. It's time to let them know we are listening.

>> Sign up at for more information on how you can help fight back.

Together we can shine the bright spotlight of accountability on these hosts. It is time for each of us to speak up and make our voices heard.

I hope you'll join with us in this fight.


Eric Burns
Media Matters for America

Janet Murguía
President and CEO
National Council of La Raza

P.S. -


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