Rightbloggers Ride Rush Limbaugh's Slut Wagon Into a Ditch
Boy, those were the days. Last week, Rush Limbaugh called a young pro-contraception activist a slut and a prostitute because -- well, basically because she was a young pro-contraception activist.
Rightbloggers cheered this advancement of the public discourse and family values.
Limbaugh spent a lot of time last week attacking Sandra Fluke, who had appeared at a Congressional hearing to speak in favor of Obama's birth control insurance mandate. Fluke argued that some women had trouble paying for contraceptives, which necessitated the inclusion of birth control in insurance coverage, which Republicans have been seeking to deny on alleged religious grounds.
Among Limbaugh's bon mots on Fluke: "She's having so much sex she can't afford her own birth control pills," "Essentially says that she must be paid to have sex, what does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute," "If we are going to pay for your contraceptives and thus pay for you to have sex, we want something for it. And I'll tell you what it is. We want you to post the videos online so we can all watch."
A couple of conservatives, such as Ann Althouse, thought this was a little over the top. But most of them... well, let them tell it.
"Rush Calls Some Slut a Slut and Everyone Gets Sand in Their Collective V@g!n@," said The Alternative Conservative, who apparently found "vagina" offensive but "slut" OK.
"Please don't call Sandra Fluke a slut," said Ace of Spades. "Respect her for what she is, a shiftless rent-a-cooch from East Whoreville."
"Let's face it, I'm sure most people, including Liberals/progressives, though 'my goodness, how much sex does she have a day? Does she ever study?'" fantasized William Teach.
Things were a little different at the classier rightblogs. At National Review, for example, Daniel Foster called Limbaugh's comments "ungentlemanly' before explaining why Limbaugh was perfectly within his rights to call the slut a slut. Class will tell!
First, said Foster, Rush was Right cuz he's funny: "He considers himself an entertainer," explained Foster, "and routinely says outrageous and/or un-PC things in the service of being provocative (in both the good and bad senses of that word)." So why you stressin', ladies? He's just making a joke! Also, "Bill Maher, Janine Garafalo, or if you like, Keith Olbermann" said something racy once, so there.
At the same venue, Mona Charen complained that NBC had edited her remarks to make it seem as if she had objected to Limbaugh calling the woman a slut and a prostitute. Liars! she cried: She had in fact offered "a full-throated and vigorous defense of Rush that went on for 5 minutes."
Charen added, "While I had thought that they were going to include at least one woman who didn't see it their way, I was wrong."
Charen then revealed what she had really told the MSM lieberals: That while she thought Limbaugh's "choice of words was crude... I certainly understood and sympathized with the point he was making," which was, along with the point that Sandra Fluke is a slut and a prostitute, "a law student is now a hardship case? She needs the rest of us to provide her with free contraceptives?" This is a strange way to describe the collection of insurance benefits, but at least Charen was clear on the point that Sandra Fluke is a prostitute.
Some rightbloggers tried what one might call, if one were brain-damaged, a humorous approach.
Insert fat pillhead douchebag joke here.
John McCormack of the Weekly Standard, for example, heard that "birth control pills can be purchased for as low as $9 per month at a pharmacy near Georgetown's campus," which is also "the price of two beers at a Georgetown bar." Get it? Fluke can be had for the price of two beers, haw haw! Come on, lady, we laughed when you came in!
At The Daily Caller, Ekulf Ardnas agreed: "[Fluke] has an incredible array of birth control devices and techniques to choose from," he said, "including birth control pills, patches, caps, rings, shots, diaphragms, implants, spermicides (foam, jelly, cream, film), male condoms, female condoms, morning-after pills, Depo-Provera, IUDs, pulling out, tubal ligation and, yes, abortion. Do they still make chastity belts?" Haw haw, all them creams and jellies and she's still not satisfied. What a slut!
Also a greedy slut, apparently, because in order to afford her copious birth control options, "she has the choice to economize on her routine expenses and not have cable TV," wrote Ardnas, "that evening out with friends or that new pair of shoes... She has the choice to not have sex at all, thereby completely eliminating the risk of an unwanted pregnancy. This is crazy talk, of course," because she's a slut.
"I must ask liberals, what's your problem?" said Don Surber. "Because all last summer, liberals held Slutwalk protests all over the world. Now some of these same women are acting like shocked 19th Century Victorian matrons." (Next week: How come they can call each other "nigger" and we can't?)
Others tried to be reasonable. "Young Sandra Fluke of Georgetown Law is not a 'slut,'" admitted Michelle Malkin. "She's a moocher and a tool of the Nanny State. She's a poster girl for the rabid Planned Parenthood lobby and its eugenics-inspired foremothers." See? civility!
Some even tried journamalism. "This morning, in an interview with Matt Lauer on the Today show," reported eagle-eyed Jammie Wearing Fool, "it was revealed that [Fluke] is 30 years old, NOT the 23 that had been reported all along."
What do you mean, so what? Jammie Wearing Fool will tell you so what! "In other words, folks, you are being played," he hollered. "She has been an activist all along and the Dems were just waiting for the appropriate time to play her."
Plus, "[Fluke's] professional background in domestic violence and human trafficking began with Sanctuary for Families in New York City." Ah-HA! "My only question is, how does someone go from being a champion of domestic violence issues to an expert of women's reproductive health issues?" Answer that, MSM lieberals!
Their support of Limbaugh, even at his most unfathomably offensive, was understandable; from the smallest rightblogger to Bill O'Reilly (who did his own copycat version of Limbaugh's routine), they all know that when the big man speaks, megadittoes are the only appropriate response. When silly liberals, or women who found "slut" an inappropriate term for a female political opponent, began to complain, rightbloggers did what they always do: They portrayed themselves as the victims (e.g. NewsBusters, who denounced the "left-wing attack on Rush Limbaugh"), and kept on yelling.
But then something unusual happened: Some mainstream conservative pundits and politicians began, however timidly, to question Limbaugh's choice of words -- and, more importantly, sponsors started dropping his show.
Suddenly these fans of the free market leapt to defend Limbaugh's Constitutional right to hold onto his advertisers.