Oct 20, 2003

The Fort Wayne Indiana Journal Gazette has asked that readers reply to the following questions: to letters@jg.net - We should answer their request.
What's next for Rush?

Has Rush Limbaugh's admission of an addiction to prescription painkillers and acknowledgment of an investigation surrounding his drug use damaged his appeal? Or will his fans forgive and forget? At Issue wants your opinion.

Is Limbaugh's drug use hypocritical considering his views? Does his apparent lack of sympathy for people who fall in a number of categories make him a target of ridicule? Or has Limbaugh merely proved he is human and deserving of the same degree of empathy as anyone else with a medical problem?

If, as has been alleged, Limbaugh took prescription drugs without a proper doctor's authorization, is his drug use the same as if he had used cocaine or heroin? Or should misuse of pain medication fall into a different category? Will his alleged drug use bring even more attention to the widespread illegal misuse of Oxycontin, a very powerful pain medication that habitual drug users grind into power and inject with a needle ?

Do you think Limbaugh's experience in a rehab clinic will change his views? He has acknowledged being treated in such clinics before. If Limbaugh is successfully treated for addiction, should he face criminal charges if allegations he illegally misused drugs appear to be probably true?

If you are a Limbaugh fan, has his experience caused you to change your mind about how the system should handle drug addicts? Will you continue to listen to and support Limbaugh, or will the reports of his drug use cause you to turn him off? If you have disliked Limbaugh in the past, are you enjoying watching a man who has expressed animosity toward so many groups of people take legitimate criticism? Or do you think he is unfairly being attacked?

At Issue wants your opinions about Rush Limbaugh's misuse of prescription drugs. Send your replies to At Issue, The Journal Gazette, 600 W. Main St., Fort Wayne, IN., 46802, Box 88, or fax them to 260-461-8648. You can send them by e-mail to letters@jg.net. Please include your name, address, and daytime telephone number.
'It'll just help me focus' Recreational use of prescription drugs is widespread and dangerous

Rush Limbaugh's recent admission of an addiction to prescription drugs is only one of many examples in which celebrities have abused drugs that were initially meant to help them. This epidemic is not unique to the famous, however: it has existed at Tufts, as well as many other college campuses, for quite some time.
Limbaugh Lovers in Denial

Rushing to the defense of the life of the party By Kathleen Parker Oct 20, 2003

I'm not much of a "dittohead," but I do have a soft spot in my heart for Rush Limbaugh. When my father was lying nearly comatose in the intensive care unit the final two weeks of his life, he rallied only once -- to request a radio "so I can listen to my buddy Rush." Those were his last coherent words. Say what you will about Limbaugh, he brought life to the party. His admission now to drug "addiction" caused me to say to a friend, "I feel sorry for him." Why? "Because I feel sorry for anyone who suffers addiction."

If, in fact, he is an addict. The verdict is still out despite what the evidence suggests. Also, pain specialists are distressed that all the piling on following Limbaugh's admission of drug use may set pain management back 100 years. First, there's a difference between physical dependence on drugs and addiction. If you use legal medications as prescribed, you're unlikely to become addicted.
Kathleen is basically in denial here. Rush has admitted addiction and opiods like Hydrocodone - the active ingredient are well known for producing euphoria. Euphoria is the psychological component of addiction and Rush is undeniably in that category - any Oxycontin abuser is. Yes there is the physical dependence but it is the euphoria that keeps an addict addicted all of their lives.
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