There will never be another Rush

Rush Limbaugh was a mentor to a lot of us in the conservative movement, and his death last week left a gaping hole in that movement. It was a sad day for America and we lost a great patriot.

When I started watching Rush’s TV show in 1992, I knew what I believed, but I did not have a clear thought process to define and especially to articulate those beliefs. Listening to Rush helped me refine those beliefs. I was a socially conservative and fiscally moderate Democrat back then, and I supported Bill Clinton. I probably would have become a Republican eventually, but Rush sped that process along.

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Everything you disagree with is not a “lie.”

Children accuse someone of “lying” when they disagree. Rational adults, meanwhile, disagree with each other and understand that differences of opinion do not necessarily indicate dishonesty, and that someone can be wrong without being a “liar.” This brings me to my response to the “Instant Message” question in the local newspaper about the second impeachment of President Donald Trump:

President Trump told the crowd to “peacefully” make their voices heard. No private citizen would be convicted of incitement if he used the exact same words that President Trump did. Trump was wrong: The election was not stolen. But being wrong is not a high crime or misdemeanor.

And here is one of the comments:

Tibbs is two for two for lying in todays HT.

OK, fine. Show me the “lie.” I made three specific factual claims in my response:

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Mask mandates, over-policing and tattletale culture

To state the obvious: It was reckless and irresponsible for throngs of people to gather in the streets in Tampa to celebrate the Super Bowl win without wearing masks or social distancing. While we are already seeing 1.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine per day, we are not out of the woods and people should not unnecessarily put themselves and others in danger of catching the disease.

With that said, two things can be true at once: Pandemic mitigation is important and the reaction to the event has been disproportionate. For the vast majority of the country, foolish behavior in Tampa is not going to put you at risk of COVID-19, so being enraged about it is a disproportionate reaction. There will always be people who act irresponsibly. Let’s have a sense of proportion.

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Hyper-partisan snow removal

A few years ago, as I walked outside to shovel my driveway, I was startled by a noise. One of neighbors was zipping down the sidewalk on a riding lawnmower with a snow plow attached. Within a few minutes, he had the sidewalks cleared for the entire block. I was very grateful for this, as I am sure the rest of the block was. What I did not do is wonder if it was appropriate to thank him if he disagreed with me about politics. To this day, I do not know his politics, nor do I care. This is because I am not insane.

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Abolishing the national anthem

It is a sad situation when displays of patriotism and love of country are seen as “divisive” and are slowly being eliminated from the culture. The reason the national anthem is played before sports games is to remind us of the greatness of our nation and instill patriotism. That used to be something almost everyone agreed on, in my lifetime. It is sad to see that is not the case any more.

The replies to my Tweet are just sad and represent the state of American “education.” People have been fed so much propaganda that they object to displays of patriotism and want to get rid of them. “America is not great,” they say. “America is not the greatest country on earth,” they say.

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