Thank you, Rush.


I’m sitting in bed, half past midnight, and this is my first real opportunity today, apart from a short acknowledgment on social media this afternoon, to contemplate the death of conservative talk radio legend Rush Limbaugh.

I first became aware of Rush in 1992, the same year I got my driver’s license, the same year as the Bush–Clinton–Perot campaign. I already had strong Republican, or better, conservative leanings. I can thank my mother for that. One of my most vivid childhood memories is going with her to East Mecklenburg High School to vote in the 1984 presidential election. She let me push the button or pull the lever or whatever for Ronald Reagan’s re-election. I was also already a Christian, grew up in a conservative Baptist church, and had strong convictions even then about the sanctity of human life (i.e., the evil of abortion). For that reason, as I was 15 and, that summer, 16 years old, I was rooting for George Bush to win re-election over Bill Clinton and Ross Perot, even if I couldn’t vote for two more years.

I could drive and I did, usually with my friends as passengers. A burgundy 1985 Honda Accord, affectionately hereafter known as the Bassmobile (for its lack thereof). But while most kids my age were discovering Nirvana and Pearl Jam, or indulging in Sir Mix-a-Lot, in my car, if it was 12:00–3:00 ET, the radio was on AM 1110 WBT, and Rush Limbaugh was on the air.

Rush was captivating because, at the time, he seemed to be the only person in the country with a national platform who was not only calling out the constant hypocrisy of then Governor Clinton and the Democratic Party, but he was defending this thing called conservatism which I also just so happened to affirm. It’s not like it became in the early 2000s onward, when talk radio became the dominant media for conservative voices and FOX News became known as the conservative news channel (though those days are coming to an end quickly). You had what today many call the Legacy Media… CBS, NBC, ABC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, etc. All dominated by voices on the left, as they are today. Rush, though, was different.

Rush’s gifts were that he didn’t tow the mainstream line, he shared your anger about the current states of affairs, he informed his audience of what was going on, he listened, he spoke, and he did it all in an entertaining way. He did it in such a way that helped me strengthen what were already my political convictions. Some people can and have written about how Rush changed their minds. I can’t say that, but he helped me think through things, and it was always good to know there was a voice out there sounding out a lot of what I was thinking. 

We knew this was coming. Rush’s deteriorating health was no secret. Still, the news of his death hit me hard, and my overwhelming feeling was one of thankfulness. I sure hope Rush knew the Lord Jesus. He spoke more about it in his final years and I hope his faith truly was in Christ. But even if not, God used him to play role in my life and the lives of millions of other listeners. 

So, though he can’t hear it or read it now, thank you, Rush. And to God be the glory!