Georgetown University law student Sandra Fluke responded Thursday to being called a “slut” by conservative radio show host Rush Limbaugh.
“I guess my reaction is the reaction a lot of women have when they’ve been called these names,” Fluke said during an appearance on MSNBC. “Initially you’re stunned but then, very quickly, you’re outraged because this is historically the kind of language that is used to silence women, especially when women who stand up and say that these are their reproductive health care needs and this is what they need.”
“What’s been amazing to me today is the outpouring of support,” she continued. “Everyone from members of Congress to Georgetown faculty to so many women who’ve contacted me, and I think it’s clear from what they’ve said that they’re not going to be silenced by this.”
Limbaugh on Wednesday called Georgetown University law student Sandra Fluke a “prostitute” and a “slut” because of her testimony in Congress about contraception.
Fluke explained that her friend, a lesbian, could not afford the oral contraception she needed to prevent ovarian cysts from forming because her university refused to pay for them on religious grounds.
“After months of paying over $100 out-of pocket, she just couldn’t afford her medication anymore, and she had to stop taking it,” Fluke testified. “Without her taking the birth control, a massive cyst the size of a tennis ball had grown on her ovary. She had to have surgery to remove her entire ovary as a result.”
But on his show, Limbaugh accused Fluke of not being able to afford contraception because she was “having so much sex.” Then on Thursday, he demanded that women post sex tapes online if they use insurance-covered birth control.
“This is really inappropriate,” Fluke said. “This is outside the bounds of civil discourse.”
Seventy-eight members of Congress have called on House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) to repudiate Limbaugh’s comments. In a letter (PDF), the legislators said Republicans had a “special obligation” to repudiate the comments because Fluke was previously denied the opportunity to testify on the panel about contraception by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA).
“I don’t really see why anyone wouldn’t condemn this type of language,” Fluke said.
Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) has called for a boycott of Limbaugh’s sponsors.
Watch video, courtesy of MSNBC, below: