CLASSLESS: Liberals on Social Media Cheer Following News of Rush Limbaugh’s Lung Cancer Diagnosis
Tragic news struck the conservative world today when right-wing talk radio icon Rush Limbaugh announced that he has been diagnosed with stage-four lung cancer.
Rush Limbaugh just announced that he has been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer
Prayers up???? pic.twitter.com/WcIlpYuBob
— Woj Pawelczyk (@Woj_Pawelczyk) February 3, 2020
Immediately after the news went public, liberals on social media started making smug and heartless comments about Limbaugh’s unfortunate plight.
— T-DOGG (@tophernoun) February 3, 2020
who knew racism was a carcinogen?
— Facts_Matter_Medicine (@Facts_Matter_RN) February 3, 2020
Finally, something to celebrate <3
— Anastasia_Fall ???????? (@Anastasia_Fall) February 3, 2020
Sometimes, cancer gets it right.
— Quentin Quarantino (@Skinjobb) February 3, 2020
Hopefully the end is nigh for him. 2020 starting off well so far.
— Piscesman♓️ (@Enigmamage) February 3, 2020
It wasn’t just random Twitter trolls who made comments celebrating Limbaugh’s cancer diagnosis. Popular left-wing Twitter influencers did so as well, and their posts were widely liked among their liberal followers.
I'll give this Rush Limbaugh the same compassion the right did with RBG dealing with cancer.
— Alex Cole (@acnewsitics) February 3, 2020
There are very few Americans who have done more damage to the political fabric of this country than Rush Limbaugh, and the world will be a far better place without him.
— Vaush (@VaushV) February 3, 2020
Rush Limbaugh once happily chimed about “I CAN breathe because I follow the law” regarding Eric Garner.
How’s that working out for you now champ?
— Prima Materia (@KiLLaCaG) February 3, 2020
Some people think it's wrong to speak ill of the dead, so while he's still alive, let's all agree that Rush Limbaugh is garbage wrapped in skin.
— Middle Age Riot (@middleageriot) February 3, 2020
Some liberals, however, did show some grace and wish Limbaugh the best in his recovery despite their political differences, even though some looked like canned messages sent around by leftist organizers:
So Rush Limbaugh has advanced lung cancer. And as a liberal lefty who disagrees with everything he has ever said and done – I wish him well in the fight ahead. Fuck cancer.
— Jesse Cox (@JesseCox) February 3, 2020
No one should ever have to suffer from cancer. I can only hope Rush Limbaugh makes a speedy recovery and dedicates himself to advocating for cancer research and affordable health care for all people, not just those who can afford it in our current system.
— Charlotte Clymer ????️???? (@cmclymer) February 3, 2020
Nobody should have to endure cancer. I don't wish it on anyone. I hope Rush Limbaugh is able to recover from his advanced lung cancer. I hope America invests money, time & research in finding a cure & there's affordable health care for those who are facing this terrible disease.
— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) February 3, 2020
Not a rush Limbaugh fan but if you’re celebrating his cancer diagnosis or think it’s fine because you think he’s a bad person you’re disgusting
— Ashley ✡️???? (@ashleyblair21) February 3, 2020
Limbaugh has emerged as the king of conservative talk since launching his national talk radio show out of New York in 1988.
His meteoric rise was described in a 1991 Los Angeles Times profile:
Limbaugh first proved this in Sacramento in the mid-1980s, where he was a local hit with the same kind of show. In the spring of 1988, a syndicator discovered him, signed him to a partnership, moved him to Manhattan with a $250,000 annual base salary and launched the 54-station “Excellence in Broadcasting” network that August. They quickly added scores of small markets; then the bigger ones began to come aboard. Last year, Limbaugh made, by his estimate, well over $500,000 and says he’ll hit a million this year. He wallows in it. He flies first class to $15,000-a-pop concert appearances all over the country nearly every weekend, working his rap on adoring crowds of 2,000 to 7,000. He markets concert tapes and T-shirts. He sponsors Caribbean cruises for his most zealous fans. He has emceed an Oliver North benefit roast in Washington. When he took a vacation last summer, his on-air replacement was Rep. Robert Dornan (R-Garden Grove), an ideological twin.
While half of Limbaugh’s audience is over 50–the classic target audience of talk radio–he also draws a substantial number of people in their 30s and 40s who listen while commuting or at work. In Los Angeles, where Limbaugh is heard on all-talk KFI, he loses 2-to-1 in listenership to veteran Michael Jackson on KABC but beats Jackson by about 15% among listeners between 25 and 54. Some of these people listen for the politics. Some listen for the humor. Some listen despite themselves. It is not unusual for a caller to inform Limbaugh that he is a regular listener who disagrees with 90% of the host’s politics. “I think your shtick is better than Pee-wee Herman and Jimmy Swaggart,” a guy from Toledo told Limbaugh recently when he called in. “Only Pee-wee thinks he’s being funny, and Jimmy thinks he’s being serious. I haven’t figured out what you’re trying to do.”
Limbaugh laughed good-naturedly at that one. He maintains that he could not care less that a lot of people are still confused by the program’s cockeyed attitudes. While his conservative views, forged in a family of Republican attorneys in Cape Girardeau, Mo., are deeply held, he never planned on becoming a right-wing icon. His professional universe is show business. The fact that he has become a semi-authorized conservative spokesman–he’s the guy “Nightline” booked last November when it wanted someone to articulate citizen support of mobilization for war with Iraq–is merely a testament to how well Limbaugh packages what he preaches.
“Sixty, maybe 70% of my success is my (conservative) message; I never bargained for that,” he told a concert audience in Long Beach late last year. “I am on the radio for one reason: to attract the largest audience I can and hold it. I am not in a think tank.” Yet he swears he is sincere. He could never pose as a liberal for the sake of ratings, he says. Too much work. Liberals never have a nice day. “They don’t have fun. They’re worried about everything being wrong.”
The entire conservative movement is shaken up by the news of Limbaugh’s diagnosis, with many public figures offering their thoughts and prayers.