On Friday, conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh received a call he will not soon forget, nor will his listeners. A man named Jerome, calling from Traverse City, Michigan, got on the line to fulfill one of his dreams: to tell Mr. Limbaugh that he saved his life while Jerome was in prison serving out an eight-year-sentence.
In the epic call, the 26-year-old described the chance circumstances of him stumbling upon Limbaugh’s program, which exposed harmful liberal fallacies, and spit out a slew of facts offhand to rip the empty Hope-and-Change he was promised with former President Barack Obama.
“I’m just calling in to say that, you know, you saved my life, man,” started Jerome. “You changed my life completely around. You saved me from a bad place. I made a mistake when was 18 years old and got sentenced to 18 years in city in Texas.”
Jerome explained that he was “screwing up” so badly in prison that he was “segged up” (put in Administrative Segregation, which is a form of solitary confinement). “They took away all my TV privilege. All I had was my radio and they play the same songs over and over,” he said. “So I was like, ‘You know what? AM talk shows! That right there could be like TV or whatever,’ and I switched over to AM, and I discovered 1470 KYYW, in Abilene, Texas.”
“I started listening about 4-1/2 years ago, give or take, and it just completely changed my whole shape of view in life,” he continued. “And now I’m out. I’ve got me a good phone, I’ve got me a good job, I’ve got. I’m out of my parents’ house and stuff.”
“I’ve had this dream since I was in prison of talking to you on the radio,” Jerome noted later in the show, adding, “I can remember pacing in my cell back and forth listening to your show on Open Line Friday just thinking, like, ‘You know what? One day I’m gonna be out of here and one day I’m gonna call and tell him how you saved my life.'”
The 26-year-old said he quickly hit the streets when he got out of prison to get to work. He has already enrolled himself in college and said he often finds himself defending conservatism to “people who don’t really know what they’re talking about.” “I’m trying to teach people what conservatism really is and try to teach people how our government’s really supposed to run,” said Jerome.
“This is incredible,” replied Limbaugh. “I’ve got goosebumps listening to you.”
“I mean, like, four years into my sentence, I was still talking about jumping it up from burglaries of houses to armed robbery, and then I discovered your show,” noted Jerome, underscoring how much Limbaugh’s program changed him.
“I have been lied to all my life as far as in schools, how I’ve been lied to all my life by the media,” he said. “When I went into seg, I thought Barack Obama was the best thing ever. And then once I started actually, like, learning and stuff like that and seeing how he’s actually screwed up our country, you’ll never catch me saying that ever.”
Limbaugh then asked Jerome if he thought such false narratives from the Left “contributed” to the life he was living pre-jail.
“There was a lot of stuff, though, as far as like how I would see all in the media about like, how bad the police are and stuff like that,” answered Jerome. “And that gave me no respect for authority and stuff because I felt like everybody… They were all out to get me and stuff like that, because I was brainwashed into thinking, ‘Okay, well, you’re in the streets. You don’t have, like, a lot of… You know, you don’t come from like a lot of money and stuff like that.’ You know, my mom worked as a waitress and stuff, and that talked me into believing that I didn’t get a chance.”
“They taught me that I had no chance really, and try to preach to people every single day that you do have a chance. You do have a chance to become an elitist,” he continued.
The millennial also spoke of opportunity in America and how he refuses to settle even in the face of naysayers:
I was talking to my stepdad one day and, you know, I told him that I wanted to open up rehab and I also wanted to open up a string of businesses. And he told me, “Well, you know, you should just focus on your factory job.” I’ve already signed up for college.
I know what I’m gonna do, and he’d say, “Because all those dreams just might not come true. They might just not come like that. There’s a lot more…” And I told him, I said, “You know, that I say the difference between me and you. You’re an average citizen. Me, I’m an elitist. I know I can make it to the top. Nobody can tell me I can’t. You know, and that’s the thing, though. There’s so many success stories. Look at Dr. Ben Carson.”
“Let me tell you, what you just said there is so important, and I have often thought that many people end up in life where they end up because family members or parents or other people who were influential with them basically said, ‘Don’t start dreaming. You’re just gonna get disappointed. Just stick with the way the family’s operating now. Just stick with it. Take the safe route. Be this. Don’t take any risks. Don’t take any chances. You’re not gonna succeed ’cause they’re not gonna let you,’ that kind of stuff. And you finally decided to stop listening to them,” replied an impressed Limbaugh.
Jerome also told a story about confronting and admitting his past wrongdoing. After Trump was elected president, a fellow inmate told Jerome that “Trump is not for us … He thinks we’re scum,'” he recalled. “And I told him I was like, ‘You know what, you gotta take a look around. We kind of are scum until you get out and prove yourself that you’re not scum.’ I was like we wreck homes, we wreck families, all of us criminals. I broke into somebody’s house and stole the stuff that they had hard-earned. I’d be mad if somebody went and broke in my house and stole stuff. I was like, we’re tearing apart communities, people in here selling drugs have killed so many people. I’m like, so you can’t blame them for looking at you like you’re scum, because you kind of are scum. And it was such a hard thing for that guy to face.”
“That had to be hard for you to say to him,” replied Limbaugh. “It’s very courageous. I mean, you’re personalizing this, putting yourself in these situations.”
Jerome ended the call by wowing Limbaugh with stats about the economy and unemployment. “What did Barack Obama have, 95 million Americans that were unemployed? Out of like 340, 340 million? … That’s crazy. There’s no excuse for that. And I’m glad Trump is turning it around. He’s turning it around fast. I mean, Barack Obama’s the first president in history that’s never made it up to three and a half percent GDP growth.”
“This is amazing! You may be guest host material here,” quipped Limbaugh.
“That was nothing short of amazing,” said the host after the call with Jerome was over. “I’m still kind of speechless about it.”
LISTEN (relevant comments begin at the 59 minute-mark):