Thursday, August 14, 2014

Rush Limbaugh's Comments on the Robin Williams Suicide

A couple of days ago, Rush Limbaugh discussed how politics have affected the media's reporting of Robin Williams's suicide.  Rush stated that the media theme was that Williams killed himself because, in this society of ours, nothing can ever be enough, that all is darkness and despair.

A lot of leftist media outlets, especially Media Matters, deliberately distorted Limbaugh's comments about Robin Williams's suicide. They claimed Rush said Williams killed himself because he was a liberal and had a leftist worldview.   However, Rush was speaking about the worldview of the media, not that of Robin Williams.

Media Matters originated the smear and sent it out to other media, who simply repeated the distortion as if it were fact.  Even the Washington Times got in on the act, with their headline "Rush Limbaugh:  Robin Williams Killed Himself Due to Leftist Worldview."

The usual mouth-foaming outrage immediately poured forth from the left, damning to hell Rush for saying such insensitive, awful things.  Except that he didn't say what they claimed.  I know, I heard the show live.

I listened to the original live broadcast, and I understood what Rush was saying, and I never took it as a criticism of Robin Williams or his politics.  Rush was criticizing the media's reporting of the suicide, not the suicide itself.  Rush was talking about how leftist thought affects their media reporting, he was NOT implying that Williams shared their worldview or that Williams killed himself because of that worldview.  Rush's motivations were clear:  he felt the leftist spin on the suicide might encourage others to emulate the deed and take their own lives.

Some media are reporting Rush's rebuttal today, but the execrable Huffington Post states that Rush is "walking back" his statements about Robin Williams, implying that the original distortion was fact and that Rush is now retreating from his original words.  Despicable.

I will criticize Rush myself, though.  When discussing the recent death of a much-loved public figure, a commenter is walking into a minefield.  Great care must be taken in any comments, as people are bound to react emotionally.  Rush did not voice any empathy for Williams or express any regret at his passing.  Such niceties are the oil that lubricates the machinery of social commentary.  It's called tact. It's called diplomacy.

Further,  he ought to have known the left would distort and misstate his remarks.  He should have emphasized that he was talking about the dark worldview of the leftist media, and not Williams's reasons for suicide.  He should have been clearer in his remarks, and he should have emphasized what he meant and didn't mean.  This was very careless of Rush.  After all of these years on the radio, he should know better than to leave himself open to such a predictable distortion.

Here are the pertinent links:

Transcript of Rush's Original Remarks

Transcript of Rush's Rebuttal to Leftist Charges


Always On Watch said...

On Sunday, I will be posting my short tribute to Robin Williams. I will not do a hatchet job on him -- that's for sure.

I read today that Williams recently received a terrible medical diagnosis: Parkinson's Disease. Hmmmm....

Stogie Chomper said...

I heard about the PD. that, on top of his other problems, must have been a terrible mental burden.

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