Rush Limbaugh has posted a statement on his website this afternoon, forwarded by his brother David (one of my friends on line), apologizing for calling Sandra Fluke an insulting name while discussing her claims. It’s impossible to retain the context of his apology by excerpting it, so I hope Rush will not mind me posting it in its entirety:
For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week. In this instance, I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation. I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke.
I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress. I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities. What happened to personal responsibility and accountability? Where do we draw the line? If this is accepted as the norm, what will follow? Will we be debating if taxpayers should pay for new sneakers for all students that are interested in running to keep fit?In my monologue, I posited that it is not our business whatsoever to know what is going on in anyone’s bedroom nor do I think it is a topic that should reach a Presidential level.
My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous, I created a national stir. I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.
I think Rush did the right thing in apologizing to Fluke. However, let’s keep in mind that it was Fluke who made her sexual activity a matter of national political debate by insisting that the government pass laws and regulations forcing employers and insurers to provide her free contraception, and apparently as much as she and others demand. It’s Republicans who believe that contraception should remain a private affair, and that employers and insurers should be free to decide whether to cover contraception for their employees and customers or not. Democrats used Fluke to demand that those choices be stripped from private enterprises and instead be forced by the executive branch to entirely subsidize contraception.
That is the argument we should be making, as Republicans and conservatives. If you want your sexual choices to remain private, don’t use the government to force other people to subsidize them. Then we won’t have to turn the sex lives of Georgetown law school students into topics for political speculation.
Update: Along those same lines, does Donna Brazile also now oppose the government mandate to force employers and insurers to have a role in the decision to use contraception? She tweeted this message not too long ago (via Keder):
Agree! The government should have no role in contraception, and shouldn’t force employers or insurers to have a role in it, either. Keep it between the woman, her sexual partner, and her doctor. Well said.
Oh, wait, Brazile meant this in support of the mandate? She seems just as badly misinformed on the issue as her media colleagues … or as deliberately obtuse.
Update: Speaking of obtuse, one lib blogger and his followers have been polluting my twitter timeline with a stupid “bet” challenge (shades of Mitt Romney!) saying that Fluke didn’t discuss her sex life with Congress. Here’s the testimony Fluke gave, in which she offered story after story about how her friends couldn’t afford contraception despite having decided to go to a law school run by Jesuits that costs tens of thousands of dollars each year, and which concluded with this passage in demanding that government force insurers, employers and her Catholic law school provide contraception for free:
“In the media lately, some conservative Catholic organizations have been asking what did we expect when we enroll in a Catholic school?
“We can only answer that we expected women to be treated equally, to not have our school create untenable burdens that impede our academic success.
“We expected that our schools would live up to the Jesuit creed of ‘cura personalis‘ – to care for the whole person – by meeting all of our medical needs.
“We expected that when we told our universities of the problem this policy created for us as students, they would help us.
“We expected that when 94% of students oppose the policy the university would respect our choices regarding insurance students pay for – completely unsubsidized by the university.
“We did not expect that women would be told in the national media that we should have gone to school elsewhere.
“And even if that meant going to a less prestigious university, we refuse to pick between a quality education and our health. And we resent that in the 21st century, anyone think it’s acceptable to ask us to make this choice simply because we are women.[“]
In case they missed this in English class, we is a self-inclusive pronoun. Otherwise, the correct pronoun would have been they. And in the real world, contraception involves sexual activity. No one was talking about the sex life of Georgetown law school students until Fluke made it an issue and claimed to represent the group, including herself.