A Rush to Judgement

Katey Parker

Katey Parker › Katey's first food memory involves herself hands deep and covered in Gregg's famous chocolate cake, resulting ...


As if it weren't enough for Rush Limbaugh to slam 30 year-old law student Sandra Fluke with sexist remarks this week, his latest attack jabs an unexpected victim: investigative food writer, Tracie McMillan, and author of the newly released The American Way of Eating.

Tracie McMillan braved the storm of Rush's criticism, and appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show Wednesday evening to set the record straight. We thought she handled it well by recognizing his thirst for scandal and outrageous claims. After all, she was just doing her job.

In her book, Tracie goes undercover to investigate the underlying currents of our food system, by taking low wage jobs in an Applebee's kitchen, a Wal-Mart supermarket, and as a farm laborer in California. Her experiences expose the reality of those at the bottom of the food system, their struggles to survive and provide for their families, and what's inherently wrong with the system in general. McMillan is said to be "gutsy, scrappy, hard-working" and all in all, daring, to not only have dived into a controversial subject, but taken a stab at how it can be improved.

Yet all Rush sees in her work is the voice of not just a food elitist, but the wrath of America’s biggest threat:

"… young, single, white women, overeducated (but not intelligent)…"

who, like Fluke, are "whining brats," not to mention "feminazis" and "prostitutes." His misogynist opinions have caused him to lose over 40 advertisers in the past week, and endless criticism from liberals and conservatives alike.

Rush goes on to say McMillan is undeserving of the awards she’s been "showered" with, including the James Aronson Award for social justice journalism, because he doesn’t see its correlation with food.

Believe it or not, Rush, food is a social good, which might be hard to understand for someone who eats alone every night.

Disregarding the fact that McMillan is from a middle class, Midwestern family, he bullies her so-called elitist attitude: 

"It's not enough that Wal-Mart offers unprocessed food to low-income families. It has to be the best, it has to be the most expensive, but it has to be practically given away, otherwise what? Wal-Mart is racist." 

Speaking of social justice, doesn't racism fall into that category?

All this, coming from a man who says women enjoy sexual harassment, and that Obama is the new Hitler. We knew it wouldn't be long before food made it into Limbaugh's firestorm. Food politics are bound to heat up and it's hard to stomach Mr. Limbaugh spearheading the discussion.

Can't we get a break from his madness?