Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown University Law student who was called a “slut” and a “prostitute” by Rush Limbaugh last week, appeared on “The View” this morning. She utterly floored me with her articulation, composure and professionalism.
Three weeks ago, Fluke was barred from testifying to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committe about women’s access to affordable birth control. Instead an all-male panel trashed President Obama’s compromise on health care reform that if religiously-affiliated employers won’t pay for contraception for their employees, insurers must pick up the cost themselves. Sandra Fluke was later given an opportunity to testify to a group of Democrats, although it was not official, in which she explained how female students at Georgetown are struggling to pay the cost of birth control. Rush Limbaugh then attacked her on air, calling her a “slut” and a “prostitute,” and demanded she post videos of herself having sex online. Keep reading »
UPDATE, 3/3/12 at 6:30p.m: Rush Limbaugh issued an apology on his web site today to Sandra Fluke, a young woman he referred to earlier this week as a “slut” and “prostitute” during a discussion about birth control. In his apology, Limbaugh said:
“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. 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.”
Limbaugh’s chief of staff refused to tell The New York Times why the apology was issued. We’re hoping the advertiser pushback had something to do with it. [Politico, New York Times]
Several advertisers have pulled ads from Rush Limbaugh’s radio show after he called a woman a “slut” and “prostitute” on air Wednesday and suggested that she film her sex acts and put them online. Activists Twitter-bombed Rush’s advertisers, threatening a boycott, and so far two sponsors — mattress stores Sleep Train and Sleep Number — have responded, promising they will cut off the dough. Keep reading »
“I guess my reaction is the reaction a lot of women have when they’ve been called these names. Initially you’re stunned but then, very quickly, you’re outraged because this is, historically, the kind of language that is used to silence women, especially women who stand up and say that these are their reproductive health care needs and this is what they need. And what’s been amazing to me today is the outpouring of support. Everyone from members of Congress to Georgetown faculty to so many women who’ve contacted me, and I think it’s clear from what they’ve said that they’re not going to be silenced by this.”
– Sandra Fluke, the young woman who was denied the opportunity to testify in front of last month’s sausagefest hearing on birth control, tells MSNBC’s Ed Schultz exactly what she thinks about Rush Limbaugh calling her a slut. Yesterday, Limbaugh spewed, ”What does it say about the college co-ed Susan Fluke [sic] who goes before a congressional committee and 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.” Also! “If we are going to pay for your contraceptives, and thus pay for you to have sex, we want something for it. We want you post the videos online so we can all watch.” Fluke was already awesome in my book, but this mature and astute response to a pig like Limbaugh just makes me admire her more. [The Stir]
Earlier today, the Senate narrowly defeated a proposal called the Blunt Amendment that would have allowed employers and health care insurers to opt out of paying for birth control (and other medical services) if it is contrary to their religious beliefs. The vote was 51 to 48, with Senator Olympia Snowe of Maine the sole Republican to support it.
Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) proposed this amendment in response to the Obama administration’s decision that if a religiously affiliated employer refuses to cover the cost the cost of birth control, the tab must be picked up by the insurer. Democrats countered that Obama’s compromise should suffice and that the Blunt amendment would give employers power to make medical decisions for their employees. Keep reading »
You’ve probably read — on The Frisky or elsewhere — that religious employers are at odds with the Obama administration over the requirement, under the health care reform law, that insurers cover the cost of birth control if the employer itself — say, a Catholic school — refuses. These employers say it’s against their conscience to have insurers that cover birth control (despite the fact many do already, anyway). Now, someone cheeky over at the Tumblr for Obama’s reelection campaign mocked up this permission slip so employees can ask their bosses for permission to take contraception. Thankfully I work at The Frisky, where having lotsa sex and not getting preggo before you’re ready is encouraged! [BarackObama.Tumblr.com]