Fox News personality Geraldo Rivera has once again fulfilled his job requirement of spreading dense, delusional ideas. In an appearance on HuffPost Live the man whose own son thinks he's an idiot offered up the insane assessment that hip-hop has been more damaging to "black and brown people" than actual racism.
That's right. The genre that's given a voice to countless impoverished, oppressed minorities has hurt said minorities more than the systematic racism that continues to this very day. Rivera was careful to confine his comparison to racism in the last decade, signaling a denial of how real and damaging racism still is. From there he was free to overreach for an explanation that puts the onus of responsibility on the oppressed instead of the oppressing. Dude is giving us yet another rendition of the "sagging pants" argument that has no basis in reality and is itself racist.
Rivera said of rappers:
"At some point those guys have to cop to the fact that, by encouraging this distinctive culture that is removed from the mainstream, they have encouraged people to be so different from the mainstream that they can't participate other than in the racks, and the garment centers, and those other entry-level jobs. I lament it. I really do. I think that it has been very destructive culturally."
It's ok, though, guys. Rivera was careful enough to tell us about his fondness of Russell Simmons in the classic "I can say this because I have black friends" pre-defense.