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Beck apologizes for calling Obama a 'racist', did not start civil rights movement

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By Robert "Rob" Redding Jr.

Editor & Publisher

Updated Aug. 28, 2010, 10 a.m. - Talk host Glenn Beck yesterday said he made a "stupid comment" when he called President Barack Obama a "racist" during an interview last year.

It was "an ignorant comment," Beck said. "Because now that I really understand how he grew up, where he grew up, what his influences were, it is more of a liberation theology kind of attitude that he has that I immediately interpreted, because I did not understand him. I think his attitude is more like Bill Ayers, that America is an oppressor, and I just didn't understand it."

It was Beck's first apology since July of last year, when he accused the nation's half-white president of being a bigot on "On Fox & Friends" - Beck was discussing the Henry Louis Gates arrest.

"This president, I think, has exposed himself as a guy, over and over and over again, who has a deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture," Beck said. "I don't know what it is."

The next day, Beck restated the remarks: "I think the president is a racist."

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Beck also admitted that he did not start the civil rights movement.

"When I say that we started [the civil rights movement] I am not talking about white people," Beck said. I meant "people of character that see beyond color."

Beck, who is holding an event in Washington, D.C., to "reclaim" the legacy of Martin Luther King, also told Madison that he is not a "fan of social justice."

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