There aren't too many more vicious words one can utter -- at least by the standards I have -- than the one talk-show host Rush Limbaugh uttered about a young woman who wasn't allowed to testify in Washington about a bill limiting access to contraceptives. Slut.
Sleep Train Mattress Centers today pulled its advertising from Limbaugh's show, saying "we don't condone negative comments directed toward any group."
Sandra Fluke, a third-year law student at Georgetown University, who was the target of Limbaugh's bombast, answered in the most appropriate way possible: intelligently.
NPR's Two-Way blog says Fluke's university has also issued a statement:
"In an earlier time, St. Augustine captured the sense of what is required in civil discourse: 'Let us, on both sides, lay aside all arrogance. Let us not, on either side, claim that we have already discovered the truth. Let us seek it together as something which is known to neither of us. For then only may we seek it, lovingly and tranquilly, if there be no bold presumption that it is already discovered and possessed.'
"If we, instead, allow coarseness, anger -- even hatred -- to stand for civil discourse in America, we violate the sacred trust that has been handed down through the generations beginning with our Founders. The values that hold us together as a people require nothing less than eternal vigilance. This is our moment to stand for the values of civility in our engagement with one another."
Limbaugh is a liar and a hypocrite that plays to an ignorant, angry, frightened audience.
Of course his hatred should be confronted, but the thing about wrestling with a pig is - you both get dirty, but the pig really likes it.
Completely agree with St. Augustine and Georgetown's response. However, the difficulty lies in the need for all participants to take approach. When one side takes the low road and another the high road, there is little chance of getting on the right road. Additionally, arrogant and combative discouse between polar opposite participants seems favored in most media coverage.
This is insane. I don't care if she's a slut or not, she doesn't have a "right" to birth control.
The Republicans are totally worthless when it comes to controlling the dialogue , though.
Angela, you're wrong on both accounts.
When will the GOP understand that increasing access to birth control will reduce unwanted pregnancies, thereby reducing abortion?
Regardless: She, and I, and all women have a right to control the size of our families, and what comes out of our uteruses. We have the right to purchase birth control, regardless of how our pharmacist feels about it. We have the right to affordable PREVENTIVE health care, of which birth control is one component.
Sandra Fluke sounds like she will go far in life. And that's no fluke.
In legal terms, the issue isn't about a 'right" contraceptives. Where matters of the government and medical care are concerned, historically, it's been about a right to privacy.
Jim Shapiro, I tend to enjoy your comments, but with that comparison you have offended the pigs.
Does the American Yiddish pejorative "schmoe" (obnoxious, contemptible or detestable person, or one who is stupid or foolish) apply to Rush Limbaugh? You be the judge. There is another four letter "s" word we could use in this situation "Shun."
Sandra Fluke was going to testify about the Catholic women students at Georgetown University who need prescriptions for hormonal contraception NOT to prevent pregnancy but to treat reproductive illnesses such as endometriosis and polycystic ovarian syndrome. She tells of women were not able to get the medications they needed, who were accused of lying even though they had doctor's documentation, who suffered severe and painful medical consequences due to lack of coverage or inability to purchase medications without coverage. It is worth listening to the actual testimony.
Limbaugh's comments were an intentional distortion concerning what Ms. Fluke said. His lie was meant to defame Ms. Fluke. Unlike Ms. Fluke, I am not a law student, but I seem to recall that my first two sentences pretty much define criminal slander. IMHO, he ought to be so charged and prosecuted.
The Big Dog - You're right. The Limbaugh/pig analogy was unfair. While both are infamous for their gluttony, pigs are highly intelligent and have never known to play fast and loose with the facts.
Anyone seeking "the pill" can get a prescription and a year's supply for about $350 at the high end. A legitimate prescription for hormonal control/disease prevention will in fact be covered by insurance if the prescribing doctor knows what s/he is doing. Condoms protect against STDs, the most pervasive health concern at issue in this debate, and easily can be had for free. So the personal attacks on Ms. Fluke are unnecessary to discredit her obviously false testimony. Mr. Limbaugh fell for a trap and allowed serious discussion of the underlying issue to get completely sidetracked.
STDs have absolutely nothing to do with birth-control pills, Jeff. That's some serious ignorance there.
Also, many women don't have $350/year or even $35/year to spend on birth control. But even if they can afford that, it's still basic preventative medicine. Basic preventative medicine is often covered by insurance currently, and will be universally covered with the new health care law, if I'm remembering correctly.
Jamie, you missed my point entirely. Of course the Pill does not protect against STD's, but condoms do, as I said, and they are easy to obtain for free, and thus are the best answer to the main health issue affecting women when it comes to birth control. There are lots of "preventive" medicines that are not covered, and if you think all "preventive' care will be covered, then I can't wait for the federal government's program to pay my gym membership.