Last night I was thinking about a question that requires something more than a yes or no answer. For those of you who follow the same political news sources that I do, please bear with me as I explain… and correct me if I get any of the details wrong. (My “following” of these things is choppy sometimes.)
Here is a question. Yes or No answer.
Do you hope the new president will succeed?
If that question was answered NO by myself, without my being allowed to explain, then that could make me sound like a bitter angry Republican, at best… or un-American, un-patriotic or even treasonous, at worst.
Many conservatives have been expressing that they “hope the new president will succeed.” That sounds fitting and appropriate, and seems like what should be said at a time like this. However, Rush Limbaugh went against the crowd and said that he doesn’t hope that the new president will succeed. Mr. Limbaugh was berated for saying such. I, who love Rush Limbaugh, who finds great comfort in listening to his program on the spotty occasions that I can, just KNEW that there was a good explanation for him saying that.
Last night on the Sean Hannity program (which I only watch about once a month anymore, but I knew he was interviewing RL, so I made a point to tune in) Rush Limbaugh explained. He said that if President Obama succeeds in implementing liberal policies, for example, socialized, government–run healthcare,
then that would NOT be a success for our country – it would be the end of things as we know them. Our country would become something completely different than what we have known it to be. So Rush explained that in that sense,
he does NOT want the new president to succeed. On the other hand, Mr. Limbaugh also explained that if Mr. Obama decides to take the country in a direction that embraces some of the policies of, say, Ronald Reagan, then Rush would consider that a true success (as he, RL defines it) and he would want Mr. Obama to succeed in such a way.
So, in many venues, including religious and political, TERMS are defined differently and can affect the other people’s understanding of what we mean by what we say. In these cases, yes and no just doesn’t cut it.