Chinese-American Lawmaker Mentioned By Limbaugh Receives Racially Charged Death Threats

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Last week, Rush Limbaugh used Chinese President Hu Jintao's state visit as an opportunity to mock Chinese culture by crudely imitating Hu's speech. State Sen. Leland Yee, chair of the California Senate's Select Committee on Asian Pacific Islander Affairs, responded to Limbaugh's comments by calling for an apology, saying that Limbaugh's "classless act is an insult to over 3,000 years of cultural history, and is a slap in the face to the millions of Chinese Americans who have struggled in this country and to a people who constitute one-quarter of the world's population."

On his show the following day, Limbaugh dismissed Yee's criticisms, deriding the notion that he could have "blown up" 3,000 years of Chinese history "in 18 seconds, right here on the EIB network."

Now, less than a week later, Lee has reported receiving numerous racially charged death threats, including one fax addressed to "Fish Head Leeland Yee" that stated in part: "Rush Limbaugh will kick your Ch*nk ass and expose you for the fool you are."

The San Francisco Examiner reported that according to Yee spokesman Adam Keigwin, while Yee "often receives 'heated and excited phone calls' from citizens who are against his liberal policies ... Wednesday's faxes were 'direct and threatening.' "

Meanwhile, the San Francisco Chronicle reported that this was not the first time Yee has received such threats, noting that his office received similar faxes in April after Yee called on California State University at Stanislaus to disclose the speaking fee it paid Sarah Palin for a 2010 fundraiser.

However, Yee's spokesman told Think Progress that "in light of what of what happened in Arizona," his office is taking threats such as these very seriously. In fact, the Chronicle also reports that Yee's office has been contacted by the Pima County Sherriff's Office to investigate a possible connection between the faxes received by Yee in April and those found during their investigation of the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

As a result, Yee has launched an online petition aimed at stopping the "Hate from Rush Limbaugh." The petition implores Limbaugh to apologize for his remarks and urges his sponsors to pull their ads from his show.

Transcript of Limbaugh's response to Yee is below the jump.

LIMBAUGH: Today, the left is exorcised. I mean, I have -- "That was racist, it was bigotry, it was insulting." And it wasn't. It was a service. I insulted the ChiComs -- I insulted the ChiComs, I insulted 3,000 of Chinese history. I did, I insulted -- well, here. Let me find it here. There's a state senator in California by the name of Leland Yee, he's from San Francisco. And he claims that I owe the Chinese community an apology for mocking the speech.

"State Senator Leland Yee, San Francisco, called on conservative radio personality" -- that's a new one -- "Rush Limbaugh to apologize to the ChiCom community today for mocking Chinese President Hu Jintao's speech. Limbaugh was complaining today on his show about a Fox News broadcast that omitted translation of Hu's words, and he spent 18 seconds speaking gibberish Chinese. 'Normally, they translate every couple of words, but Hu Jintao was just going, "Chin chong, cha chin chong," ' he said before continuing to mimic the language." That's how they quote me.

"Yee chairs the state Senate Select Committee on Asian Pacific Islander Affairs and said Limbaugh owes the Chinese community an apology for his 'pointless and ugly offense. His classless act is an insult to over 3,000 years of cultural history and is a slap in the face to the millions of Chinese Americans who've struggled in this country and to a people who constitute one-quarter of the world's population,' Yee said in a statement. 'His comments' " -- comments? Was I saying things I didn't know I was saying? Did somebody translate me and it ends up being offensive? My comments?

" 'His comments are sadly indicative of the bigotry that has often plagued Limbaugh's commentary and lined his pockets.' Oakland Mayor Jean Quan and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee attended a state dinner tonight at the White House at which Hu, President Obama, and the first lady were present." Again, the first lady did not wear her Mao jacket, which she normally does.

So, I don't know folks. Those were comments, and they were mocking and insulting and 3,000 years of Chinese history blown up yesterday in 18 seconds, right here on the EIB network.

Posted In
Diversity & Discrimination, Race & Ethnicity
Premiere Radio Networks
Rush Limbaugh
The Rush Limbaugh Show
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