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Every now and then it pays to look in on America’s classic rock kleagle, Ted Nugent. Last week, the 66-year old guitarist from Waco, Texas, was on talk radio. Media Matters caught him explaining where racism comes from in our great country. And Rock NYC has transcribed the part you can’t do without.

From KFYI’s Michael Broomhead show in Phoenix, Nugent began by speaking of his developing years in Detroit. He even played the same club as Yusef Lateef!

It was, Nugent said, a time free of unity:

“There was such a unification … colorless. We never judged by color, we always judged by spirit and soul, which I think is a translation for content of character.

“As I saw race relations improving I realized I was there in the Sixties where there were separate water fountains down South …

“But I was in Detroit and was unaware of that …”

Ted was, he continued, very busy playing guitar down by the River Rouge.

“So when I started hearing about the abuse of blacks at the hands of corrupt governments and the Democrat Party and their Ku Klux Klan men I was shattered,” continued Nugent.

“So I suppose I can jettison forward where by the late Sixties, the Seventies, I couldn’t find racism. I never saw racism. I never heard of racism. I thought it was a thing of the past and in isolated pockets of inbreeding and cannibalism and spiritlessness.”

And then the Nugent interview turns into a rant, as all of his do, centered on the President and others on the American right wing’s list of tyrannical foes:

“I’m heartbroke that it is deteriorated to the point it has,” declared Nugent. “I was on the road to the greatest tour of my life: Shut Up & Jam 2014.

“I never smelled racism. I never heard of any racism except this celebration of divisiveness in the media, academia and by our own government. So when I hear the racism from a gun-running attorney journal and they side with an Al ‘Not So’ Sharpton racist mongrel, it breaks my heart because nowhere in the Nugent world, nowhere on tour, nowhere in my hunting camps, nowhere in the school activities or the charity activities, nowhere can I find racism except coming out of the White House!”

It’s at least the second time Nugent has called an African American a mongrel. The first was when he called the President a “subhuman” one in 2014.

Here at RockNYC, we’ll fill in the gap in Nugent’s retelling.

It was an earlier reference to Barack Obama as a “subhuman mongrel” that cost Nugent six shows on his “Shut Up & Jam” summer tour last year.

Nugent had been under scrutiny by the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Hatewatch. When one of its editors called the Coeur d’Alene tribe to ask why it had booked someone with a history of racist statements, the tribe canceled Nugent’s performance. Two other casinos run by Native Americans also canned him.

But Nugent couldn’t shut it, calling people picketing his show in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, “unclean vermin.”

Concert promoters remarked they’d never really seen anything quite like it, adding Nugent’s reputation was now a liability. Bookings in the future might be much harder to come by. Only in Dixie would it be a sure bet for Nugent, they reasoned.

Not the best prognosis.

One also appreciates Nugent’s grim discourse linking the “Democrat Party and their Ku Klux Klan men” to pockets of racist inbreeding and cannibalism in the South. It’s the kind of thing to really liven up high school classes in civics.

Because as good students of American history know, after the Johnson administration’s Civil Rights Act of 1964, the “Democrat Party and its Ku Klux Klan men” changed their colors. And while perish the thought that remnants of cannibalistic nature exist in the southern hinterlands, if they vote, it’s Republican now.

Wait, there’s more! Realizing he’s acquired the stench of intolerance, something not enjoyed by all, Nugent says he really doesn’t wish to resort to so much name-calling.

But, from the radio broadcast:

“I’m not just blaming Barack Obama and his gun-running attorney and the lying scam artist Hillary Clinton and the freak Nancy Pelosi. [Then, imitating the voice of an old lady/Nancy Pelosi:] You don’t need to read this, you need to sign it in your little doggy do.

“I don’t want to plummet into the street slang of calling people names but these people are freaks.”

As a vow, pure as a bucket full of rat baits.

Read it. Listen to it. Sure, Ted Nugent is having fun with freedom of speech, making jokes. But here’s the thing. Once you’ve been labeled a public bigot, nothing you say is funny, just more of the same hateful crap.

Nugent has no summer tour this year. He’s radioactive. There’s no more passing himself off, or his band of unfortunate jobbers, as county fair family entertainment.

Nugent recently told another music publication there would be only a few one-off shows
this year. It’s so he can spend more time with the family.

“Man hoards himself when he has little to give away,” goes an obscure saying.

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