Tuesday, June 5, 2012

How to respond to people who criticize Rush

I have many friends who are liberals, and nearly everyone of them, in a debate, has said to me one time or another, and usually when they have no counter argument:  "You must have been listening to Rush Limbaugh.  That's the kind of stuff he says.  Rush Limbaugh is a drug addict, he called a lady a slut, and he lost a bunch of advertisers."

For the longest time I didn't know how to respond to this.  For the longest time I basically defended Rush to the best of my ability, and I usually leave the discussion feeling defeated.  And then I realized that if you defend yourself you lose.  I wrote about how being on the defense in a debate is a bad idea.  I even tell my kids if someone accuses you of something, like your boss,  your teacher, or your mom, don't defend yourself.  Defending yourself is a sign of guilt.  I'm not saying you're guilty, I'm just saying that it makes you look guilty.  A man simply says, "Okay." 

And it was in thinking about this is how I decided to finally respond to the "You listen to Rush, and he's an idiot," bit from my liberal friends.  I decided to simply ignore them.  I ignored them and then I let them go on their rant and think they won.  It's at this point I realize they have no grounds to be debating me.  They have no facts.  They are utterly on the defense.  Plus it's at this point I realize that no matter what I say they will not change their minds, even if I have all the facts on my side.

So sometimes I respond by just shutting up.  Yet more recently I say something like the following:  "Have you every listened to Rush Limbaugh or read his transcripts?"  Usually after claiming to listen to him on the news, I say, "No, I mean have you ever listened to his show for an hour or two, to fully hear what he is saying in context.  Have you ever gone to Rushlimbaugh.com and read the transcripts?"

The answer is almost always:  "No!  I have never done that."

"Okay, then how can you criticize him?" I ask.

They usually come back with something, yet it never makes any sense.  Then I come back with this line:  "How can you criticize a book without reading the book?  If you read a book, then you have a right to criticize it.  Most book critics have read the book.  If you don't read the book, then you can't criticize it.  You are not a credible critic.  So if you haven't at least read the transcripts to what Rush says, which are right on his website every day, how can I honestly find you a credible critic of Rush Limbaugh?  How then can I honestly think you understand what Rush Limbaugh has to say?  The truth is I can't.  If you don't read Rush, you can't criticize him."

"I read about Rush," is what I usually get as a response.  To this I say, "Reading about Rush is not reading Rush.  How do you know the people who write about Rush, especially those who hate him, are even readers of Rush?  How do you know they even listen to Rush.  By many of the things I read that Rush says according to the media that are fully taken out of contexts, it's hard for me to believe that most if any of those people actually truly listen to Rush.  They, in turn, are also non credible critics. You can't criticize two sentences of what a man says and leave out the other two hours worth of comments leading up to the two sentences.  You have to take what he says in context."

I might say something like, "I know liberals don't listen to Rush because the truth hurts. It hurts before it makes you better."

Sometimes I just say, "Have you ever listened to Rush or read his transcripts?"  Sometimes I just say that and let them blather on.  Sometimes that brings the greatest joy. Next time this happens, though I might say something even different.  Like:  "Rush rarely says anything I didn't already know.  What he does is he gives us conservatives a voice."

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