Rush Limbaugh told his listeners he had advanced lung cancer today, and I broke down and cried like he was a family member.
I bet you felt the same way.
I remember when my father, who died in May 2019, called me to tell me he had stage III pancreatic cancer – and there was no cure. I slid down my bedroom wall and cried. I felt very helpless, and I can’t even imagine what my poor father was feeling.
We had him for two and half years after his diagnosis, and had he been able to withstand the aggressive but necessary chemotherapy, the cancer probably would not have taken him so quickly.
I know millions of us — when Rush told us about his diagnosis — probably thought about a family member or friend who had suffered the same fate.
For so many, Rush Limbaugh is part of our collective family. As he says, he has guided us through tumult, despair, rockiness, murkiness — and the good times — for over 30 years. That is simply an extraordinary legacy to leave to all of us.
Just last week, I was thinking about what we will all do once Rush retires from radio. Who on earth can take his place? The short answer is: nobody. But inevitably, an heir apparent will rise. He or she just won’t be Rush.
I started listening to Rush in probably 1990, as a teenager. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t consider him “appointment radio.” He helped shape opinions I already had into well-formed arguments I continue to express today.
Those of us who call ourselves Dittoheads know that the term is not a pejorative, as the left would assume. We are not “mind-numbed robots.”
Rather, we ALREADY held these beliefs and it took a man like Rush Limbaugh to articulate them for us and to shape them into better arguments with which to fight the left – which, as I like to say, is our sacred duty.
I remember the Contract with America. the Clinton impeachment (which was totally justified, as Clinton was charged with eleven actual felonies), the fantastic Paul Shanklin parodies like the riff on “In the Ghetto” called “In a Yugo,” and the Feminazis’ rallying cry. I was not a listener during the infamous “caller abortions,” but those of you who were remember the outrage and fits from leftists.
I remember the faux hysteria that followed his obvious proclamation of “I hope Obama fails.” This statement, delivered at CPAC in 2009 after Barack Obama’s election, was meant to show he hopes the “fundamental transformation” Obama promised us all would fail spectacularly. Sadly, Obama had indeed fundamentally transformed the country by the time he left office. The silver lining, of course, is that the debacle of the Obama years ushered in President Trump.
I remember Dan’s Bake Sale and when Rush had his nightly (or was it weekly?) television show. I remember his bright, rather obnoxious neckties he sold. I’ve subscribed to the Limbaugh Letter off-and-on for years and have gifted it to my stepfather many times. I bought a case of Two If By Tea, and it was fantastic. I bought the Rush Revere books for my niece and nephew.
The day Waylon Jennings died, Rush, in lieu of his normal theme music (The Pretenders’ “My City Was Gone” — for which Chrissie Hynde, a big liberal, begrudgingly accepted millions in royalties) instead played a little-known Waylon Jennings song called “Wild Ones.” (I will link it here – and for some reason I can only find it in video form. But it is a dynamite song.)
(Wild Ones: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICTZySTSf1Y )
After the entire song played Rush said: “A great man died today, and his name was Waylon Jennings.” That has stuck with me all this time.
I remember Rush’s second wife “the lovely and gracious Marta” and how she would often call into the show. I was sad when his marriage ended but happy when he found his current wife Kathryn.
I, like so many of you, donated to his annual Leukemia and Lymphoma Foundation telethon fundraiser. I have heard his charitable donations (to myriad organizations and individuals) are immense and often anonymous.
I remember last uly Fourth, when Nike decided to take their cue once again from the Human Muppet Colin Kaepernick and canceled their Betsy Ross shoe. Why? Because the Human Muppet had a problem with the First Flag. He said it’s RAYYYYSISS. So what did Rush and the EIB Network do? He turned lemons into lemonade, and began selling his “Stand Up For Betsy Ross” gear. Soon, he was able to donate $4 million to the Tunnel to Towers Organization — which pays off mortgages for families of first responders killed in action.
Like Rush, I am right 99.8% of the time. It’s a gift.
Rush Limbaugh single-handedly reinvented talk radio and rescued the AM radio band from obscurity. His brilliance, with “Talent on loan from God,” was making the complex look easy. He has mentored and spawned thousands of excellent conservative hosts, but nobody can take his place.
He is the GOAT, and there will never be another Rush.
I pray fervently that Rush gets better. He certainly has the best medicine and doctors money can buy. I can’t help but think of him talking about his “formally nicotine-stained fingers,” and the sadness that, yes, those damn cigarettes got him in the end after all.
I am saddened by the level of hatred that has been expressed by the left in just the first few hours of his announcement. Rush always calls Twitter a sewer, and today it lived up to its seedy and vile reputation. I will not subject myself (or you) to the torrents of hate coming from the truly depraved leftists among us. I will choose to seek the light — and to pray.
And here I am — crying again.
Rush gives a voice to all of us conservative deplorables who the left reviles, disparages, mocks, and demeans on a daily basis.
He gives a voice to tens of millions of Americans – and to those millions who listen worldwide. That voice is of a cheerful, commonsense, forward-thinking, positive conservatism that has just been sharpened and made more perfect over the many years we have been lucky enough to listen to him.
It takes a man of a stature like Rush Limbaugh to knock the impeachment farce and the Iowa Caucus out of every political wonks’ frontal lobes – at least for a few hours.
There are very few people who have truly changed this world – and he is one of them.
That’s why I think we all cried today.
Rush, I wish you all the peace in the world. I pray for your full recovery. And if that isn’t possible, I pray that you will give just a little bit more of yourself to the world – because we need you. We need you more than ever.
I pray with all my heart you will be at President Trump’s second term inauguration in January 2021.
Let’s get it done.
We love you, Rush.