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Rolly: Assault of the Limbaughs

Published March 10, 2012 1:01 am
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

My column last week condemning radio commentator Rush Limbaugh for calling a Georgetown law student a "slut" and a "prostitute" attracted more than 400 online responses, a portion of which convinced me to write a follow-up column.

I now am convinced that obsessive listening to Limbaugh's program makes otherwise intelligent people stupid.

About a fourth of the comments were pro-Limbaugh, which would be fine if those making the arguments were not so factually off-base, if they at least tried to find sources of information beyond what Limbaugh told them. Because what he told them is bunk.

To summarize, Limbaugh called student Sandra Fluke those awful names because she testified before a Democratic committee in Congress in favor of the Obama administration's plan requiring insurers to cover contraceptives without requiring a co-pay from the insured.

Limbaugh said Fluke wanted we the taxpayers to subsidize her sex life.

Last week, in so many words, I called Limbaugh out for the buffoon that he is. Most of the responders agreed with me, as did, apparently, dozens of companies that withdrew their sponsorships of Limbaugh's program.

But the people who championed Limbaugh, and there were dozens, demonstrated that they get their information solely from Limbaugh. Because of that, they are sadly misinformed.

And they vote.

The pro-Limbaugh posts can best be represented by a poster calling himself, or herself, jsmithcsa. That contributor said I ignored the facts.

And what were the facts that I ignored?

"She wants taxpayers to pay for it."

Actually, she wants the private insurance company to which she pays premiums to pay for it, just like it would pay for other medications.

"Fluke's argument was not about (the friend who lost an ovary due to the formation of cysts that could have been controlled by oral contraceptives)."

Actually, nearly her entire testimony was about that friend and the other medical conditions that can be treated with oral contraceptives.

"Fluke's argument was that we should pay for her $3k/year birth control pills — the fact is that you can get them for free at Planned Parenthood, or $9/month at any drug store."

In fact, the $3,000 she mentioned was for the entire three-year stint at law school, not for each year. And a check I made found birth control, on average, costs around $30 to $45 a month. The free pills from Planned Parenthood only go to those who qualify by being very poor. Fluke would not qualify. And that program is under attack by the Republicans in Congress who want to defund it.

Fluke's argument "was not about contraceptives — it was about making her Catholic University pay for something they oppose on a spiritual and moral level."

Actually, it was about the insurance company chosen by Georgetown, covering contraceptives in a plan that Fluke pays for, a coverage that already exists in the insurance plan for the faculty at Georgetown.

"You have to understand the arguments in order to debate them, Rolly."

Precisely, jsmithcsa.

Other posters aped Limbaugh's logic that she wants more and more birth control pills for free so she can have more and more sex.

Actually, it's a prescription drug. You take one pill a day for 21 days, then stop for a week, no matter how much or little sex you have.

But back to jsmithcsa: "Rush has apologized." (after his corporate sponsors started dropping him) "Are you as big a man as he is?"

No, jsmithcsa, I am not as big a man as Rush Limbaugh is. —






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