Let me preface by saying that I don’t think people should go around calling women sluts. Of course I don’t want to be a called a slut. No woman does. But that is not the issue at hand today.
If Rush Limbaugh called me a slut to my face, or on the radio, I would laugh. I don’t care what Rush Limbaugh thinks of me. I can guarantee I’ve been called a slut before. I’m sure, at some point, I’ll be called a slut again. I’m not so sensitive as to get my knickers in a knot over petty name-calling, no matter who is behind the rude comments or whatever reason a person can come up with for directing that name toward me.
Rush Limbaugh called Sandra Fluke a slut and I don’t care.
I mean, it bothers me in a “well clearly that’s uncalled for, but Rush Limbaugh is pretty much a jerk anyway, so who cares” kind of way. I don’t think it matters who he calls a slut. It could be some grad student at a school I don’t attend, it could be me, my best friend, or even my saintly Italian grandmother.
I. DON’T. CARE. WHAT. NAME. HE. CALLED. HER.
What does bother me is the reason Rush Limbaugh called Ms. Fluke a slut. He called her a slut because she claims to spend $3,000 a year on birth control. His comments imply that the amount of money a woman spends on birth control correlates to the amount of sex she has. T
Granted, I’m not overly sensitive. I’m not going to be that upset that some guy behind a radio microphone said something that implies something that is, frankly, inaccurate. Obviously most educated people know how birth control works, so his argument is irrelevant.
The thing is, Rush Limbaugh can call anyone he wants a slut. He is free to talk about whatever issue he wants. And his advertisers are equally in their rights to pull funding if they don’t like what he says. It’s that free market he so avidly believes in working its capitalist magic. So for those people out there who are whining that Rush is being kept from exercising free speech: No, he’s not. He spoke freely. His advertisers are speaking now that they don’t wish to be associated with someone who thinks he can get away with calling a young woman a crude name on the air.
The issue here isn’t even women using birth control. We know Rush can’t possibly be against it, as he’s been married four times and has no children. Obviously the dude is pro-using birth control. Like most Americans.
Somewhere underneath all this name-calling and vitriol is a debate about health insurance funding part of/all the costs of birth control. Somewhere underneath this idiocy is a debate worth having.
This is not about who called who a slut. This is not about which advertisers pulled funding from Limbaugh’s show, and if the backlash is a threat to our first amendment rights. This is supposed to be about health insurance and an issue central to women’s health. Because trust me, we aren’t going to stop having sex. And we aren’t going to stop wanting to have sex safely and without worrying about getting pregnant.
So can we stop complaining about “the ‘slut’ heard ’round the world.” No, it’s not nice to call a women a slut. But it’s also petty to act all offended by immature name-calling. (Personally I think most of the people who are in a tizzy are hypocrites. I challenge you to find me one person who hasn’t called someone a slut. Not that it makes it ok, but the excuse that we need to stick up for women is just not cutting it coming from people who probably use the word regularly. You know?)
And even if Rush loses an advertiser or two, or 40, he’s established enough that he will likely always be on the radio. Free speech does not equal the ability to say whatever you want without consequences. Rush knows this. He’s been in this game for a long time, has said controversial things before, and will come out on the other side of this just fine.
Frankly, it’s past time for us to quit fueling the political wildfire, friends. We’ve all become so combative when it comes to politics, that I am pretty sure we’re all forgetting the actual point. We’re willing to jump on any little thing just to prove how WRONG the other side is. “Your guy called this girl a mean name!” “Your people are taking away free speech!”
Blah blah blah. Politics as usual.