This was my first thought when I heard Rush Limbaugh’s repeated prurient insults directed at a private citizen. It’s interesting to me that Democrats are now articulating this very idea in media appearances–see the clip from syndicated columnist Connie Schultz on Rachel Maddow last night, and now President Obama in his press conference this afternoon. It’s difficult for a lot of parents of daughters not to see in Sandra Fluke their own daughter, if not now then eventually someday. As Schultz says, “[Limbaugh] asked for video, Rachel, of this young woman; he called her a slut because she wanted to be responsible about birth control. They have no idea yet, it seems to me, what’s been unleashed but they’re about to find out.” (Scroll up to about 5:30 to see Schultz’s interview.)
If my college students are at all representative, many of them were put on the Pill in high school by their parents. Not all of them, of course, but it’s hardly a remarkable thing any more for a parent of a teenager to do this. Republicans love their birth control as much as any other Americans. They also love their daughters as much as other Americans–so who are you calling a slut, again, mister?
(I am not privileging parenthood of daughters here as the best or the only reason to be outraged by Limbaugh. I’m just suggesting that given the number of parents of daughters in the United States today, it makes even less sense than calling people who want to send their children to college “snobs.”)