RUSH: I think all of this, folks, is missing the point. The discussion that we’re having here on this is missing the point. What if somebody were to say to you, “You can’t stop these things from happening”?
“They’ve happened throughout human history. Mass murder, criminals, evil people. You can’t stop them. They’re going to be there. There isn’t a fix. Not a pure fix.” What do you think people’s reaction to that would be? (interruption) Well, it’d be stronger than, “We have to try.” It would be, “We gotta get people stop listening to Limbaugh,” but fact of the matter remains that it’s true. As I point out: The worst school, mass death, mass killing in this country was in 1927.
It happened with dynamite.
But we live when? We live in a culture where the left wants us to give up oat bran one day and then eat it the next so we’ll be healthier. The left wants us to stop drinking sodas that are bigger than 16 ounces, because why? “Well, it’s healthier! You might not die.” What, you might not get sick? You might live longer? What? Why can’t we drink something bigger than 16 ounces? “You can’t have trans fats.” Why?
We live in a culture where the political activists in our society think they have an answer for everything, that they can prevent and stop everything bad from happening. I would maintain to you that they have done more to exacerbate these problems. Because what they essentially do is put a jackbooted foot on people’s freedom and liberty, and sometimes in the most innocent ways. Who cares if I drink a 32-ounce Coke? What business is it of anybody, particularly government’s?
Now, Bill Bennett, just to illustrate another point that I like to make. Twenty-five years ago when I started this program, it was filled with warnings. “If we don’t get a handle on X, we’re gonna end up here, and this is gonna happen, and that’s gonna happen,” and I maintain to you now: We’ve arrived. The threat is no longer the problem. The reality is the problem. Now, Bill Bennett is a former education secretary. Back in 1994, Bill Bennett published what he called the Index of Leading Cultural Indicators.
It was an adjunct to the Index of Leading Economic Indicators, which has always been around and is very popular. What Bennett did was to compile how the moral, social, and behavioral conditions of modern American society had changed since 1963, and he chose 1963 to get a 30-year take on things. Here’s what he found. In 1994, as compared to 1963, violent crime had increased over 500%.
Illegitimate births had increased 400%. Divorces had increased 400%. Children living in a single parent home had increased 300%. Child abuse was up 340% since 1976. Teenage suicide had increased 200%, and SAT scores had dropped almost 80 points. Now, I remember. I was here, I was there in 1994 when Bennett released these, and he was mocked and made fun of and accused of trying to tell people how to live their lives.
He was Mr. Morality, and “What right did he have?” Yet that stuff all matters. I mean, if you want to try to find out what happens here and if you are serious about preventing it in the future, it’s gonna require some courageous honesty. It may also require the acceptance of the fact that you can’t stop all of them. Somebody pushed somebody front of a subway the other day. You can’t ban subway cars.
People are going to die, in all manners.
It happens to everybody.
What if you could make the case that mass shootings are actually much lower today than they have been in the past in this country? Do you think that anybody would be willing to talk to you seriously about that? Or would they accuse you of having your head in the sand and trying to downplay this, “Because you realize that you might have to give up your gun and you’re just trying to protect your gun, and so you’re trying to come up with kinds of reasons to not get so riled up about this.”
At any rate, I think that so much of what’s happening here was predicted — and don’t forget, it was just a couple weeks ago we went back and repeated from my TV show a monologue about a mass killing in Chicago involving an eight-year-old and a four-year-old. Remember the Bob Greene column? Bob Greene, living in Chicago, asked: “Have we lost our soul?” That bothered people. “Oh, now it’s a religious problem?” The thing is they keep happening. They do.
Obama got it right. This is the fourth mass shooting during his first term. It averages out to one a year. (interruption) No, I’m not making any correlation. That’s for you to make. If you want to play that game, go ahead. It is interesting we were supposed to be unified and loving one another and at peace and all these wonderful New Age things by now.
RUSH: Ladies and gentlemen, I should have said this at the top of the program. I assumed that people would understand this. I do not come to this program today thinking I know what to do about this, and I don’t want anybody to assume that I’m sitting here thinking I have the answers, ’cause I don’t. I think I have some pretty good theories as to why we are where we are in our culture, but how to stop this? I’m not qualified. I don’t know that it can be. I have such a cynical view about most every health story that comes down the pike sponsored by the left, from this stupid mayor putting a ban on 32-ounce sodas.
It’s absurd and I don’t think it’s responsible. But in the process we’ve created this belief that if you don’t do this and don’t do that and don’t do that and don’t do that, somehow you’re never gonna get sick, and you’re never gonna die, you’re never gonna get cancer, and you’re never gonna get leukemia. It’s folly. We’re lying to people as part of a political agenda to expand the size of our government. I think what’s going on is hideous. But I don’t want anybody to misunderstand that I think I’ve got the answers here, in terms of how to prevent this. I don’t know that it can be. But I just want to tell you a couple things that I do believe.
I don’t believe that you can have a culture, a society where over a million babies are aborted every year and not have a dwindling respect for the sanctity of life. I don’t think you can have a culture which talks about euthanasia, the Jack Kevorkian story that was big for a while, killing people later in life for the convenience of the living. I just don’t believe that a society which can so easily kill for the convenience of the living can do that without suffering some real consequences when it comes to the sanctity of life. I don’t know what role video games play. I don’t play video games, so I don’t know if a kid playing a video game all of his life actually ends up thinking that people come back to life after you kill them. I don’t know that. I don’t know if a kid playing a video game forever ends up with a cheapened view of life and a fun, glorified view of killing. I don’t know any of that.
But I do know, because I see it each and every day, that young people in this country are obsessed with fame and are willing to do a lot of insane, crazy things to get noticed because they think there’s glamour and wealth and love in fame. People watch the famous and think everybody loves them and we all want to be loved. Everybody loves them. Everybody thinks they’re cool. They have cool things. They have a lot of friends. They’re rich. All these things make people want that. You couple that with the fact that everybody wants their life to matter, to have meaning in their lives, fame, attention. I do know that that’s not healthy. And I do know that it has infected a lot of people. But I don’t know that it can be proven that a desire to be famous has a role in this episode. Maybe it does and we may never know, but I do know some of these things are just not good for the foundation of the culture in which we live overall.