If you read my blog (And I’m guessing you do, because that’s what you’re doing right now…) then you probably remember I posted about Rush Limbaugh recently.
And I said that I was mad.
You know, because he insulted Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke roughly 46 times on his radio show and apologized only for two measly words.
Those words? Prostitute and slut.
He never apologized for telling her to post videos of herself having sex online. I think Jon Stewart said it best when he called that the creme de la creepy:
But that wasn’t the point of my post. For any of you who missed it, here’s what I said:
This news story isn’t about Sandra Fluke overreacting to a little name-calling. It’s a very real warning about the kind of gross mischaracterizations and verbal abuse that women face today when they stand up for their rights.
So you can imagine how great I felt the next day when my blog was cited by Geoff Caldwell…and I was compared to a Nazi.
Here’s that lovely little quote for you: Ms. Bates description of “what happened” could not be more misleading if it had been written by Goebbels himself.
I guess, he told me!
Except…he didn’t actually address anything in my blog. You know, about how birth control is a women’s health issue. About how the government has no business playing doctor without a license. About how everyone should have condemned the kind of vitriolic attack that Sandra Fluke experienced.
I’m guessing since Geoff Caldwell couldn’t be bothered to be polite he certainly didn’t have the time to address the substance of my blog.
The only time I laughed about this was when author Nina Berry reminded me that according to Godwin’s Law of Hitler Analogies, I won the argument.
That felt pretty good.
So for any of you who were wondering: I’m not a Nazi. At least I wasn’t the last time I checked. My Bat Mitzvah was a long time ago so…nope. Still proudly Jewish. And, you know, firmly against gas chambers and genocide.
And for any of you wondering who Geoff Caldwell is (or why you should care about him) he’s a guest columnist for the Joplin Globe. As to the why you should care about him part? Well, after reading this lovely message on his blog, I don’t think you should.
If you’re of the left side of the political aisle I strongly suggest you move along to a site more in sync with your intellectual capacity. (Disney or Sesame Street perhaps?) Between having less gray matter than that found in your average toad, having inherited the “government is God” gene at birth, and unable to speak the words “individual liberty and personal responsibility” without triggering a seizure, TheCorner has had to sadly conclude that today’s liberal is quite simply, just unreachable.
Ahh . . . that’s the spirit! Just treat anyone who might disagree with you like crap!
But let’s move on, shall we?
So I had just read Mr. Caldwell’s, erm, commentary, when I saw that Rush Limbaugh had just verbally attacked another woman–this time an author–on his show.
Here’s what Rush Limbaugh said:
What is it with all of these young single white women, overeducated — doesn’t mean intelligent.
I stared at that headline over a video and suddenly breathing wasn’t easy. I turned to my mom in disbelief. “Is Rush Limbaugh talking about me? Oh my god. Young. White. Single. Women. Overeducated. Is this . . . is this about me? But I don’t even have my degree yet!”
My mom told me I was being ridiculous. But then I pointed out that the link to the video clearly said it was an author he was now ridiculing.
That’s when my mom started looking nervous.
“It can’t be about you,” she pointed out wisely. “That makes no sense.”
And she was right. I wasn’t the woman whose hard work was being ridiculed and dismissed based purely on her gender. That lucky recipient was Tracie McMillan whose book “The American Way of Eating” led Rush Limbaugh to call her an “authorette.”
I’ve got to say, Tracie McMillan handled all of this very well. Certainly better than I would have if these barbs had been directed at me.
And make no mistake, calling her an “authorette” was meant to be insulting.
Why? Because it’s insulting!
It’s damn hard to become an author! You have to get an agent and a publishing company–neither of which are easily acquired. And one other thing . . . right, you have to write a freaking novel!
I remember the first time I was interviewed about my autobiography Marni and I saw my name pop up on the television with the title author right in front of my name. I couldn’t stop grinning. I think I may have even busted out my happy dance. It was just…amazing.
So if somebody had insinuated that I was an overeducated (yet unintelligent) “authorette” you can bet that I would want one very large apology. In fact, I would want it super-sized for the additional crack about being single.
That part felt like a really crappy Valentine’s day card:
Feel single and alone? Well rest assured that none of your accomplishments matter either!
Can we also take a moment to unpack the “overeducated doesn’t mean intelligent” part? First of all, I’m not certain that it’s possible to be “overeducated.” That’s like calling someone out for being too smart. If Tracie McMillan had three PhDs that would be awesome. I would think “Wow! What a fantastic message to send to girls! Excelling in school is something positive and attainable. Rock on!”
And I do think Tracie McMillan is setting an excellent example. Judging from this article about her time dealing with sexual harassment while working in a restaurant, she’s also an amazing writer.
But here’s the kicker: Tracie McMillan has a B.A.
Rush Limbaugh insinuated that she was “overeducated” because she has a four-year college degree. What kind of message does that send to women? Better not go to college at all, honey! They might overeducate you!
Rush Limbaugh has not apologized for this verbal attack. Just like he has not apologized to Sandra Fluke for any number of the wildly inappropriate and insulting comments he made about her. So, no. I can’t just shrug and say “Oh, well. He apologized. Time to move on now!”
One of Rush Limbaugh’s mistakes with Sandra Fluke was that he verbally attacked her on his radio show. A mistake he just repeated with another young woman. A mistake he could very well repeat tomorrow with me.
That’s why I hope people will continue to pressure Rush Limbaugh’s advertisers. He’s a misogynist who repeatedly uses his talk show to insult and intimidate women. And no, this boycott is not in ANY way a violation of his first amendment right to free speech. Nor is it censorship. This is about you deciding whether you want to support this kind of hate speech with your money.
Again, I love reading your comments. Just please try to keep it respectful. I’ve already been compared to a Nazi one too many times this week.
P.S. If you would like to read Geoff Caldwell’s blog post you can see it here. That said, I see no reason to help his blog receive extra traffic. But I figure that you should decide if reading his post for yourself is something that interests you.