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In defense of Dr. Laura

It’s a word so grotesque, so hurtful that I can’t bring myself to type it, let alone say it out loud. Yet controversial radio host Dr. Laura Schlessinger used the N-word 11 times in a recent exchange with a caller. In response to listener complaints – and likely management and advertiser concerns -- Dr. Laura announced last night that she’ll stop her radio show at the end of the year.

I’m no fan of the good doctor, who bills herself as a tough love life counselor. I find her unnecessarily combative, close-minded, and so lacking in empathy as to be down-right mean. But I don’t think she should have called it quits – or have been pushed out, if that turns out to be the case.

Unlike Mel Gibson’s obscenity-laced attacks, Dr. Laura did not use the N-word to describe a particular person or as a smear against African Americans. She used the word matter-of-factly in describing – accurately, by the way – how often the word is used by African American comedians. “Black guys use it all the time,” she said. “Turn on HBO, listen to a black comic, and all you hear is” the N-word. She added, “I don't get it. If anybody without enough melanin says it, it's a horrible thing; but when black people say it, it's affectionate. It's very confusing.” It’s a distortion to say that African Americans always use the word to express affection and many people of all colors find it patently offensive no matter the context. But you get her drift. She later apologized, before announcing her resignation.

Were her comments provocative? Absolutely. Did she deal indelicately with an exquisitely delicate subject? Yes, again. But were her comments racist? I don’t think so. Here’s a link to the full audio of Dr. Laura’s exchange with the caller. You be the judge.

By Eva Rodriguez  | August 18, 2010; 1:12 PM ET
Categories:  Rodriguez  | Tags:  Eva Rodriguez  
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"DR" Laura is not a doctor.she is a bigot. this is not the first time she has spewed her hate speech. we are all better off w/o having to hear her latest 'advice',er make that rant.

Posted by: 10bestfan | August 18, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

The use of the n word wasn't the major problem with Dr Laura's racist tirade.

Why did she hold this caller responsible for what rappers and black comedians said. She had no evidence that this woman is a rap fan. Could I walk into Dr Laura's house and start using derogatory language about women because white rappers like Eminem and comedians like Howard Stern do it? That would be as logical.

Her resentment towards the whole idea of a black man in the White House comes through loud and clear. Why did she bring up Obama, totally irrelevant to the discussion. Her hostility towards black people was on vivid display.

Of course the irony of her objecting to complaints of racism while she clearly displays hers is lost on the racists.

And now her pleading for her 1st amendment rights! Give me a break. The first amendment doesn't give one the right to say what you want without anyone criticizing you. It protects you from government censorship. It doesn't guarantee you a commercial platform to spew whatever you like. Hey baby, its a free market out there and if your broadcaster and sponsors choose to drop you that has nothing to do with the 1st amendment.

Posted by: jesther | August 18, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

"Laura" is an in-your-face jack-booted bully! I don't like Dr. Laura and Judge Judy types .... both reigning queens of Larry King.
I can imagine her and her Fox pals having many a good laugh at how they have millions of slavering Americans eating out of their hands and lapping uo everything they're told to think about.

Posted by: mimosa1 | August 18, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

I only see one comment.......probably not a white person making that one. All other races can make any claim against whites as to their supposed views on people of other races based on any reference what so ever as to their physical status.......Whiners, and people, it seems to me, who hope to get money somehow, someday from evil white guy.
PS.....MS. Rogriguez should listen to the clip of Dr. Laura's comments. There are only 3 N-words, not 11

Posted by: protek252 | August 18, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps she could have made her point by saying less than 11 times, but the point is valid. Either the word is offensive or it's not. If some people can use it and no one is supposed to be offended, all people should be able to use it.

Posted by: jcrrt | August 18, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Dr. Laura was dead wrong.
Her most offensive comment is that she says Blacks voted for Obama for no reason. Since when is it okay to paint an entire race with the "dumb voter" label. According to her, not one pro Obama African American individual was an informed voter. Tsk, Tsk this shows volumes about her opinion of African Americans. Obviously, she needs to take her own advice and "Do The Right Thing" like learn to be more tolerant of those with opposing views. She was rude to the caller, and had the nerve to tell the woman she should not have married her husband if she can't deal with the N word usage in her house. That's insane and sounds like anti race mixing talks. Isn't it 2010? Who tells someone they shouldn't marry out of their race due to unique obstacles of their marriage. She may not be a racist but she sure was helping their cause.

Posted by: reginaanita2004 | August 18, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

I'm sick and tired of people using the excuse that using that word is okay because comics and rappers use it.

You know what...IT's NOT OKAY. I'm African-American and that word is forbidden in my house and around my children. I don't use it and I chastise family members that do. If I hear in a public space, I frown and immediately usher my children away from the idiot.

Lets be clear...all African-Americans do not use the n-word nor approve of its use in any context, period!

Posted by: | August 18, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

"If some people can use it and no one is supposed to be offended, all people should be able to use it."

Some logic. If I call you a teabagger and no one is supposed to be offended, can everyone call you the same?

Posted by: areyousaying | August 18, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

I agree that her commments were not racist in themselves. For those that listen to her--I can't imagine why--her comments may add to a long-running narrative that could paint her as a racist. But in this context I thought she used the N-word to make a point about white people using the word--not directed at anyone. It was a typically clumsy, ignorant statement on her part. But hardly racist.

That said, she's a loudmouth bully and a blowhard who has no qualilfications at all to be giving anyone advice about anything. So good riddance to her.

The more important question is why anyone listened to her in the first place. Are we so weak as a people that we need morons like her to tell us how to live? That's just sad.

Posted by: McKDave | August 18, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Dear Ms. Rodriguez, I beg to differ with you. Laura Schlessinger's comments were as racist as they come. I am not talking about her use of the N-word.

No, I am talking about everything else she said. Does she really believe that rappers represent the attitude of all Black people? Does Laura actually think that "a lot of blacks voted for Obama simply ’cause he was half-black"? What proof does she have of that? That is a racist opinion, a reflection of her own racism.

A quick fact check would have shown her that Blacks have been voting Democrat for some time now. Lyndon B. Johnson received 94% of the Black vote.

Posted by: vb601 | August 18, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

So, we don't know what word it is that Dr. Laura used because you won't write it. If we wnat to know, we have to leave this site and hear it somewhere else and then come back to this site and talk about it. In other words, Dr. Laura has cojones and you don't, but you still want your little column here at WAPO. You are too good to use certain words, but it is okay if rappers and black comedians and Dr. Laura use them, but you don't like the words because somebody told you you ashouldn't like them,. You probably don't even know the history of the word. It's actually mostly innocent, a bastardization of the word Negro into 'nigra' and then modified into the well-known late nineteenth century usage. But when offense is taken, deference is shown. The problem today is the the perpetual victims have now declared that even the use the the precise, correct and genteel "Negro" is prohibited. Please send your bank account number and password directly to the NAACP.

Posted by: chatard | August 18, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Ok, let's see. So the author says Dr. Laura was not racially offensive when Dr. Laura A.) defended whites degradingly labeling this black caller by the n-word by bringing up how some black rappers and comedians SOCIABLY call members of their OWN race by the word B.) before the caller even explains herself, Dr. Laura spews out the hypersensitivity stereotype that's used to keep blacks from defending themselves against racism (countless racist acts like blacks being yelled at to get out of Walmart, black women told they are unattractive by John Mayer, Tea Party leaders talking about how they miss blacks being enslaved, Michelle Obama being shown as a monkey, 3 ridiculous role models being represented for Black History Month at an elementary school of all places, etc. {don't dare complain to it blacks or as always we'll be fed the hypersensitive, crying racism line} C.) in response to the caller's concerns, Dr. Laura goes completely off topic to accusing blacks of only voting for Obama because he's black (mulatto to be exact but whatever) despite blacks always voting democrat, despite whites having a history of keeping blacks out of not only the white house, despite blacks not voting Jessie Jackson when he ran, etc.

D.) Dr. Laura goes on to imply that a black president means anti-black racism is nonexistent and if blacks are to complain to anti-black racism while Obama is in the house they are merely crying racism and just trying to "demonize whites" E.) Dr. Laura says "don't NAACP me" insulting a historical black organization that helped the African American community establish their freedom from white oppression and discrimination 35 years ago F.) Dr. Laura said the reasoning for blacks pointing out racism at all could only be explained by "us looking for power". So, we're not really offended by all these acts of racism in the last several months. It's just an interest in power. /: \ Oh and bread by black activist

Dr. Laura also says she doesn't think whites stating comments like "Oh you black people do this and why you black people do that" is racist. Dr. Laura further alludes to the hypersensitivity stereotype by the ever so common "You blacks have a chip on your shoulder" remark.

I'm sorry but if you don't see any of this as racially offensive, you are no better of a human being than Dr. Laura and you shouldn't be writing for this nor any other website.

Posted by: tat7manlulu | August 18, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who felt that any of the verbiage used by Dr. Laura was racist, really need to read up on racism or come to grips with reality and the real world. It is unfortunate indeed that a person can't listen to a radio, or a portion of a conversation without jumping all over it. We are ashamed of you!

Dr. Laura is a real doctor. She fielded a call from a typical "planter" who by far had a different agenda than for which she called. If you went to your doctor and asked a question would you urge them into a meaningless debate? Funny that 'Jade' said nothing of the word 'nigga' until after the comercial break. This suggests to us, that she was in fact being coached. When Jade did not get the desired results from Dr. Laura then and only then did the N-word come into play.

However it wasn't only the N-word; in an attempt to decouple the conversation Jade also mentioned that there was fear that a black man was taking over the nation! Then her reference to the NAACP is absolutely abhorrent. This kind of rubbish is victimizing and unfortunately Dr. Laura saw that writing on the wall and decided don't need it.


Posted by: cre8itsecure | August 18, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Considering the history of USA, whites cannot use the word complimentary. I can't explain it, they simply don't have the cool.

Posted by: fresno500 | August 18, 2010 3:10 PM | Report abuse

I heard the exchange and she was an insensitive arrogant fool. The woman called her for advice on how to deal with racist in her family and her response was stupid. Even after the woman, who was white, let her know she was offended she continued her tirade.

Her "job" is to give advice and if this was her example of advice then she deserved to be "fired and/or pushed out" because she didn't do her "job".

Posted by: rlj611 | August 18, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Might as well read the whole thing in one place.

Part 1:

SCHLESSINGER: Jade, welcome to the program.

CALLER: Hi, Dr. Laura.

S: Hi.

C: I’m having an issue with my husband where I’m starting to grow very resentful of him. I’m black, and he’s white. We’ve been around some of his friends and family members who start making racist comments as if I’m not there or if I’m not black. And my husband ignores those comments, and it hurts my feelings. And he acts like –

S: Well, can you give me an example of a racist comment? ‘Cause sometimes people are hypersensitive. So tell me what’s — give me two good examples of racist comments.

C: OK. Last night — good example — we had a neighbor come over, and this neighbor — when every time he comes over, it’s always a black comment. It’s, “Oh, well, how do you black people like doing this?” And, “Do black people really like doing that?” And for a long time, I would ignore it. But last night, I got to the point where it –

S: I don’t think that’s racist.

C: Well, the stereotype –

S: I don’t think that’s racist. No, I think that –

C: [unintelligible]

S: No, no, no. I think that’s — well, listen, without giving much thought, a lot of blacks voted for Obama simply ’cause he was half-black. Didn’t matter what he was gonna do in office, it was a black thing. You gotta know that. That’s not a surprise. Not everything that somebody says — we had friends over the other day; we got about 35 people here — the guys who were gonna start playing basketball. I was going to go out and play basketball. My bodyguard and my dear friend is a black man. And I said, “White men can’t jump; I want you on my team.” That was racist? That was funny.

C: How about the N-word? So, the N-word’s been thrown around –

S: Black guys use it all the time. Turn on HBO, listen to a black comic, and all you hear is n!gger, n!gger, n!gger.

C: That isn’t –

S: I don’t get it. If anybody without enough melanin says it, it’s a horrible thing; but when black people say it, it’s affectionate. It’s very confusing. Don’t hang up, I want to talk to you some more. Don’t go away.

I’m Dr. Laura Schlessinger. I’ll be right back.

——– BREAK ———

SCHLESSINGER: I’m Dr. Laura Schlessinger, talking to Jade. What did you think about during the break, by the way?

CALLER: I was a little caught back by the N-word that you spewed out, I have to be honest with you. But my point is, race relations –

S: Oh, then I guess you don’t watch HBO or listen to any black comedians.

C: But that doesn’t make it right. I mean, race is a [unintelligible] –

S: My dear, my dear –


Posted by: Skowronek | August 18, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

FURHTERMORE, Dr. Laura went on to say she was quitting her talk show because her Freedom Of Speech rights had been violated and she "couldn't speak from her heart what she really thought" which proves 2 things: 1.) that her apology was bogus (then again, she didn't apologize for all of the garbage she said; just the mere usage of the n-word so she might believe in all that racist garbage she spewed that she never apologized for) 2.) she's a so-called doctor that doesn't understand Freedom of Speech. Let me explain what Freedom of Speech is and by the way, this is coming from college junior who never claims to have a psychology degree.

There are countless whites who defend anti-black verbal abuse with "Freedom of Speech": Freedom of Speech refers SOLELY to the U.S. government being banned from throwing people in jail for verbalization of any sort. Freedom of Speech does NOT mean people are allowed to go around saying whatever they want, however offensive, without receiving negative consequences. Believe it or not, there are tons of negative consequences aside from the U.S. government throwing people in the slammer which are legal; for example, an employee can be fired from their job because they decide to VERBALLY sass their customers; a child can be sent to the principal's office because they make sexually explicit REMARKS during class; users can be banned from some websites for using SLURS; etc. These are all negative consequences of verbal inappropriateness which are not against the law and there are many more where that came from.

Posted by: tat7manlulu | August 18, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Very brief comment... Good riddance.

Posted by: CardFan | August 18, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Part 2:

C: — since Obama’s been in office –

S: — the point I’m trying to make –

C: — racism has come to another level that’s unacceptable.

S: Yeah. We’ve got a black man as president, and we have more complaining about racism than ever. I mean, I think that’s hilarious.

C: But I think, honestly, because there’s more white people afraid of a black man taking over the nation.

S: They’re afraid.

C: If you want to be honest about it [unintelligible]

S: Dear, they voted him in. Only 12 percent of the population’s black. Whites voted him in.

C: It was the younger generation that did it. It wasn’t the older white people who did it.

S: Oh, OK.

C: It was the younger generation –

S: All right. All right.

C: — that did it.

S: Chip on your shoulder. I can’t do much about that.

C: It’s not like that.

S: Yeah. I think you have too much sensitivity –

C: So it’s OK to say “n!gger”?

S: — and not enough sense of humor.

C: It’s OK to say that word?

S: It depends how it’s said.

C: Is it OK to say that word? Is it ever OK to say that word?

S: It’s — it depends how it’s said. Black guys talking to each other seem to think it’s OK.

C: But you’re not black. They’re not black. My husband is white.

S: Oh, I see. So, a word is restricted to race. Got it. Can’t do much about that.

C: I can’t believe someone like you is on the radio spewing out the “n!gger” word, and I hope everybody heard it.

S: I didn’t spew out the “n!gger” word.

C: You said, “N!gger, n!gger, n!gger.”

S: Right, I said that’s what you hear.

C: Everybody heard it.

S: Yes, they did.

C: I hope everybody heard it.

S: They did, and I’ll say it again –

C: So what makes it OK for you to say the word?

S: — n!gger, n!gger, n!gger is what you hear on HB –

C: So what makes it –

S: Why don’t you let me finish a sentence?

C: OK.

S: Don’t take things out of context. Don’t double N — NAACP me. Tape the –

C: I know what the NAACP –

S: Leave them in context.

C: I know what the N-word means and I know it came from a white person. And I know the white person made it bad.

S: All right. Thank you very much. Thank you very much. Can’t have this argument. You know what? If you’re that hypersensitive about color and don’t have a sense of humor, don’t marry out of your race. If you’re going to marry out of your race, people are going to say, “OK, what do blacks think? What do whites think? What do Jews think? What do Catholics think?” Of course there isn’t a one-think per se. But in general there’s “think.”

And what I just heard from Jade is a lot of what I hear from black-think — and it’s really distressting [sic] and disturbing. And to put it in its context, she said the N-word, and I said, on HBO, listening to black comics, you hear “n!gger, n!gger, n!gger.” I didn’t call anybody a n!gger. Nice try, Jade. Actually, sucky try.

Posted by: Skowronek | August 18, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Dr Laura should be fired for her general response which is mind numbingly stupid. The idea that her husbands white friends would use the N word around his African American Wife after she complained is OK is beyond insane. there can not be a rational argument that its okay in that situation.

I agree that there is no justification for anyone to use the N word, and it always saddens me to hear African American use it in any content.

Posted by: Muddy_Buddy_2000 | August 18, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Part 3:

Need a sense of humor, sense of humor — and answer the question. When somebody says, “What do blacks think?” say, “This is what I think. This is what I read that if you take a poll the majority of blacks think this.” Answer the question and discuss the issue. It’s like we can’t discuss anything without saying there’s -isms?

We have to be able to discuss these things. We’re people — goodness gracious me. Ah — hypersensitivity, OK, which is being bred by black activists. I really thought that once we had a black president, the attempt to demonize whites hating blacks would stop, but it seems to have grown, and I don’t get it. Yes, I do. It’s all about power. I do get it. It’s all about power and that’s sad because what should be in power is not power or righteousness to do good — that should be the greatest power."

"In response to listener complaints – and likely management and advertiser concerns"

Her listeners complained--her audience, the people whom the advertisers are targeting. If the listeners leave (and to be honest, I didn't realize the woman was still on the air at all), then of course the advertisers pull out. That's the free market in action--both ideas AND money.

Posted by: Skowronek | August 18, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Tat7manlulu, get REAL. You said:

C.) in response to the caller's concerns, Dr. Laura goes completely off topic to accusing blacks of only voting for Obama because he's black (mulatto to be exact but whatever)

Here's exactly what she said:
" No, no, no. I think that's -- well, listen, without giving much thought, a lot of blacks voted for Obama simply 'cause he was half-black. Didn't matter what he was gonna do in office, it was a black thing. You gotta know that. That's not a surprise. "

"A lot" does not mean ALL. And she's right, a lot of black people did vote for Obama because he's half black. Just like a "lot" of black people would have voted for Colin Powell if he had ran for office as a Republican.

This is all about hypocrisy amok, and PC stupidity. I don't even like Dr. Laura, but this is idiotic. Was she being racist? No. Was she being hamfisted and brash in her response? Yes.

Just out of curiosity, how many of you dogpiling Dr. L. here were angered by Jesse Jackson saying he was "Gonna cut Obama's ba!!$ off"? What if it had been a white man?

Posted by: bill_kfly | August 18, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

“I talk every day about doing the right thing. And yesterday, I did the wrong thing.

I didn’t intend to hurt people, but I did. And that makes it the wrong thing to have done.

I was attempting to make a philosophical point, and I articulated the “n” word all the way out – more than one time. And that was wrong. I’ll say it again – that was wrong.

I ended up, I’m sure, with many of you losing the point I was trying to make, because you were shocked by the fact that I said the word. I, myself, realized I had made a horrible mistake, and was so upset I could not finish the show. I pulled myself off the air at the end of the hour. I had to finish the hour, because 20 minutes of dead air doesn’t work. I am very sorry. And it just won’t happen again."

Well, evidently it won't happen again, with that employer.

Posted by: Skowronek | August 18, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the transcript, Skowronek.

EVEN if she hadn't said the Word in the interview, based on that one exchange, Dr. Laura is terrible - like others have said here. That was a horrible, rambling non-answer that simply didn't deal with the caller's problem.

Ms. Rodriguez, you said "I find her unnecessarily combative, close-minded, and so lacking in empathy as to be down-right mean."

But then I don't see why you say right after that, "But I don’t think she should have called it quits..."

Good riddance, Dr. Laura.

Posted by: cmecyclist | August 18, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

So what would the dear Dr's response (and her PHD is not in psychology, folks) have been if the lady had said my husband's friends use the B-word around me and my husband doesn't say a thing. I'm pretty positive comediennes black and white, male and female use the B-word on HBO. Does that make it okay for her husband's friends to say it around her in her own house? Are our social norms now defined to what is said by comediennes on HBO?

Posted by: mbcullen | August 18, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Ms. Rodriguez. I listened to the transcript of the dialogue between Jade and Doctor Laura. I think Dr.L sidetracked herself in talking about people using the "n" word, instead of answering the question. Jade never said that anyone said that word to her, her complaint was that they made assumptions about what "black people" like, or don't like. Dr. L showed the same insensitivity that the white friends and in-laws of Jade apparently showed. She missed an opportunity to learn from her listener. What Dr. L did not do, in stating the "n" word, however many times, was make a racist slur at anyone. We all know her political/conservative leanings, so that's no surprise, and many (probably most) of us do not agree with her. She was trying to make the rather lame point that whites helped to elect Pres. Obama (not that they should not have done so) - and by extension she was trying to say that not all whites have misconceptions about blacks. That was irrelevant and nonresponsive to Jade's concerns. However, if we are now to understand from this "news event" that nobody can even refer to the "n" word in the context of discussing its sociological impact on different races and in different forums, and not as a directed slur at anyone, then we are all in Harry Potter Land with "it that must not be named." I would rather like to hear Jade's viewpoint on this issue on national tv and radio, rather than Dr. L's, however.

Posted by: willsgrill | August 18, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

I think Rodriguez and some others are missing it here. It's not the use of the n-word; it was the whole conversation that displayed a bitter attitude about race. It was Dr. Laura who brought up Obama--completely unrelated, mind you, to the question. She completely lost her cool over this topic. You have to ask, if a White person who married a Black person with the same issue had called Dr. Laura, would she have been just as belligerent? I sincerely doubt it. She probably would have empathized.

Posted by: forgetthis | August 18, 2010 4:00 PM | Report abuse

I believe that this whole discussion begs to ask how many people believe that most or all (so-called) "black" people behave as or condone portrayals by entertainers such as "black" comedians, actors, or "rap artists"?

How many people believe that skin color or (so called) "racial identity" determines one's behaviour or sensitivity? If Dr. Laura believes that all "black" people should somehow share the same behaviour or sensitivity to certain words and issues then her beliefs are racist. This also holds true for "black" people who believe that fellow "blacks" should all share the same mindset. Is anyone surprised to find that some or most "black" people might actually be offended when "black" comedians and "rap artists" use offensive words?

Dr. Laura's "freedom of speech" remains intact because the 1st Amendment simply protects her from being jailed by the government for what she said; however, all of us pay a price for what we say in the court of public opinion.

Posted by: SurrealAmerican | August 18, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Context is everything. N****er is not the same thing as N***a. Whether you understand that or not is really irrelevant. If you don't know, ask, but don't run around saying things and using "I don't understand" as an excuse. For the record, African Americans are not the only people who use that word. Even white guys use it as a "term of endearment."

Posted by: nsu1203 | August 18, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

What a misconception! Just because you have a select amount of rap groups and comedians use the N-word, it is not to be assumed that most black people either use the word or feel immune to the usage of the word.
Newsflash! Most African-Americans/Black Americans find the word to be offensive, I included. In fact, many of us have banned the word and refuse to use it and would be highly offended if anyone, including other African Americans/Black Americans were to call us this or use it in discussion. Please stop generalizing us! Dr. Laura did exactly what she should have done, stepped down. She was wrong, as she has said; however, by her conversation, I think she needs to realize that she suffers from overgeneralizing and a lack of emphathy towards others.

Posted by: laur1 | August 18, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Dr Laura is a straight talker and folks today can't handle it. From grade school, to the psychobabble being taught as parenting skills, to the PC crowd demonizing anyone who talks of responsibility or discipline we have crippled our children. Everyone gets a trophy, yipee!
Perhaps the only area not effected is athletics where you are either good enough or you go home and work harder and try again, the athletes get it and they don't cry about it.

That being said, Her attempt with the caller to examine whether the caller was being too sensitive was poorly done. Laura was also trying to show the double standard in society, and there is. Free speech is clearly is great for the political left but not for Christians, but the point here should have been that for the love of his wife and standing by her, when it appears she did nothing to bring this on, He should have manned up and stopped it.

Dr Laura is about on par with Keith Olberman when it comes to being obnoxious to some folks. She typically gives excellent advise, I have read some of her books also. As usual, she got gunned down and held to a hypocritically higher standard than people hold themselves to.

Posted by: pleasecoddleme | August 18, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Ms Rodriguez, it's not for you to judge, but the ones who equate the N word with hurt, injustice, discrimination and, in some cases, death at the hands of American Caucasians that have used the N word open and freely to dehumanize African Americans.

Posted by: GoldCoast | August 18, 2010 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Whatever, Eva. How about when "Dr." Laura--who has no actual medical credential--called every gay person on the planet a "biological mistake"? That's what cost her a TV show, and deservedly so. I say good riddance.

Posted by: uh_huhh | August 18, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Dear vb610: We are having problems with your assessment of Dr. Laura’s comments as being “as racist as they come.” Thank you for the reference about it was “everything else she said.” It may serve you to understand that Laura never uses or infers anything about rappers in the entire conversation. And yes I believe, as Laura does, that a lot of people voted for Obama simply ‘cause he was half-black.

However, your inference is incorrect and you should know about it: Laura never says that “a lot of blacks voted for Obama…” In truth she actually stipulates that Obama was elected by the younger generation of whites which is statistically correct. All one needs to do is goggle election data or see the results from the Democratic or Republican National Conventions and the demographical breakdown is there for all to see and hopefully learn.

On the Democrat issue vis-a-vie blacks voting your assessment goes up until 1964; however, prior to 1960 the Republican Party was dubbed the party of blacks insofar as from 1791 until 1964 every election had many, many black Republican voters. Now then anyone interested in getting their facts straight before making the proverbial mistake of debating in your underwear please visit Media where they have both the printed transcript as well as the audio that accompanies it.

Finally, I believe this issue has been taken far, way to far out of context and we need for educated people to read the darn thing and put a stop to what the main-stream media has successfully done up to this point – generate news.

Posted by: cre8itsecure | August 18, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

chatard, you incredible moron, the "N" word was used to put a black person in his/her place. It was used as a slur, and insult, and if you don't know that, you are stupid. You tried to rationalize the "N" word in your post, but I challenge you to believe what you wrote. If you don't think it's an insult, then by all means, go ahead and use it as often as you like.

Posted by: swatkins1 | August 18, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Dr. Laura was dead wrong.
Her most offensive comment is that she says Blacks voted for Obama for no reason. Since when is it okay to paint an entire race with the "dumb voter" label. According to her, not one pro Obama African American individual was an informed voter.

Who tells someone they shouldn't marry out of their race due to unique obstacles of their marriage.

Posted by: reginaanita2004 | August 18, 2010 2:35 PM

Now whose being the just embellished what she said so you could demonize her, stick to the facts!

BTW Jackson, Sharpton, West, the Congressional black caucus, the Black Forum, and tons of voters said that very thing in interviews, "It's time to vote the black man!"

Second: so are denying there are obstacles? we wouldn't be have this discussion if there weren't obstacles, and it cuts both way. Mixed race marriages are fools if they don't consider this and get premarital counseling. Or should we just pretend this is utopia?

Posted by: pleasecoddleme | August 18, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Why did Dr. Laura mention Obama? What did he have to do with this conversation? Why is he being blamed for all of the mistakes in this world. "Oh, oh, I have mold growing in my closet, it must be Obama's fault!" President Obama inherited a mess, and it is going to take a long time to fix it. In the meantime, can't we all just get along?????

Posted by: laur1 | August 18, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

laur1: actually the mold is Bush's fault, just ask Obama.

If you had a neighbor that threw beer cans in your yard everyday and blasted the stereo when you were sleeping would you just "get along" What a vapid statement, think hard and you'll get the analogy since you couldn't see how O got into the Laura's conversation.

Posted by: pleasecoddleme | August 18, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

TWO very wicked people gone..


Posted by: vettesport | August 18, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

-2 affairs with married men
-Pregnant out of wedlock
-race bater
-Gave religious advice on morality before quitting the Orthodox Jewish church
-Bigotted against gays who frequently equated them with pedophiles
-Tone deaf to racial issues
-Openly dislikes the idea of a black president
-Mother refused to talk with her for 18 years and she was dead in her condo for 2 months before anyone found her
-a PHD is phisiology, not psychiatry

Wants her "first ammendment rights back".

Not a role model for America

Posted by: cadam72 | August 18, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

I just saw a movie on Sunset Blvd. called "Stock Shock" about sirius xm radio and greedy hedge funds and all this Wall Street corruption and the audience was pretty shocked by what really goes on. I got it on DVd to show friends. "Stock Shock" will change minds and sign up for sirius xm. The movie website ( )has the best price on the DVD.

Posted by: DeniseHubbard | August 18, 2010 5:45 PM | Report abuse


I do not need to think very hard to know that you need help! Seriously!

Obama in fact had nothing to do with the original question. Maybe you should listen to the ORIGINAL QUESTION! Was Obama one of her husband's friends? Was he at the party? Are they democrats or republicans?

No need to respond because I do not care about what you will say, nor will I be looking for it. It is obvious by the number of comments you have posted that you have nothing else better to do.

Good luck finding the help that you so desperately need!

Posted by: laur1 | August 18, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

to ALL,

i'm SORRY but, as "a person of colour" (AmerIndian), i do NOT care WHO uses "the N word", it makes me think a great deal LESS of the person.- further, it makes me SICK at heart to hear anyone say it.- aren't we ALL better than THAT?
(YES, including "entertainers")

fwiw, i feel exactly the same about the term, "redskin", which has ALWAYS been RACIST & ABUSIVE. =====> let's all agree that NOBODY use either "obscenity" at ANY time and/or for any purpose whatsoever.

yours, TN46
coordinator, CCTPP

Posted by: texasnative46 | August 18, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

fr cre8itsecure:

>Dr. Laura is a real doctor...<

Her "doctorate" is in exercise physiology, which is a glorified aerobics instructor. She has no business touting herself as a "life coach", whatsoever.

Posted by: Alex511 | August 18, 2010 5:56 PM | Report abuse

“Black guys use it all the time,” she said. “Turn on HBO, listen to a black comic, and all you hear is” the N-word. She added, “I don't get it. If anybody without enough melanin says it, it's a horrible thing; but when black people say it, it's affectionate. It's very confusing.”

Dr. Lara is right about one thing: She doesn't get it. And she doesn't understand it.

For that reason alone, she never should have used the word.

Common sense dictates that when one doesn't know what he/she is talking about, they remain quiet and keep their opnion to themself. It doesn't take a "Dr." to know that.

There's an old saying, "better to remain quiet and be thought a fool than to speak up and remove all doubt".

Dr. Laura spoke up. And removed all doubt.

Posted by: ceefer66 | August 18, 2010 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Dear cre8itsecure,

You ought to read the transcript you are telling everyone else to read. According to the transcript, Laura said that "a lot of blacks voted for Obama simply 'cause he was half-black". How you are able to say that Laura never said that is beyond me.

Go read the transcript and stop debating in your underwear.

Posted by: vb601 | August 18, 2010 6:36 PM | Report abuse

You don't have to endorse lynchings to be a racist. Racism has many faces and Dr Laura puts it on like makeup. she is painting an entire race based on her own prejudice, not to mention her own insensitivities and ignorance. The word is saturated in hate, coming at the race for centuries. They have their freedom, are trying to achieve equality and their exclusive right to the word is understandable. As is their disdain for anyone else using it. Of course many feel it is wrong, no matter who says it. Nevertheless, to ignore this and go through her rant does indeed demonstrate racist attitudes. But in the end, she is a deplorable human being and one the airwaves are better without. Sadly, I suspect it won't remain that way too long.

Posted by: tfspa | August 18, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

The idea that "African Americans" (AfAms) voted for President Obama only because his father was Kenyan makes about as much sense as saying that non-AfAms voted for him because his mother was "European American".

Such a mentality suggests the bearer's mindset is one that believes "European Americans" who voted for John McCain did so because McCain and Palin are both "European Americans" and/or they are not the children of Kenyans.

To "pleasecoddleme":
Dr. Laura wasn't "gunned down" [sic] because she was being a straight talker. She was "gunned down" [sic] because what she said was offensive to a sufficient portion of her audience to warrant an exit. The likes of Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck could have said the exact same thing and not suffered as much, if at all, because their audiences have different expectations than Dr. Laura's audience.

Anytime someone speaks, they should understand the expectations of their audience. This doesn't mean that they can't be sincere when they speak, it just means that they have to accept the consequences when the audience doesn't approve of what they have to say.

Finally, just to clarify, the 1st Amendment right of "free speech" only protects individuals and the press from the government. It does not protect anyone from employers, public opinion, or the redress of those who can demonstrate harm caused by offensive speech. So, perhaps Dr. Laura shouldn't try to play the victim and "cry about it" [sic].

Posted by: SurrealAmerican | August 18, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Dr. Laura is not a Carl Rogers type. She doesn’t have a humanistic approach; and, her style is certainly not client-centered nor does she follow the principle of unconditional positive regard (blanket acceptance and support of a person regardless of what the person says or does).

Calling her is not how Forrest Gump moment defines life: “Mama always said life was like a box a chocolates, never know what you're gonna get.” With Dr. Laura you know exactly what your gonna get. In other words, the lady and anyone else is a fool to expect other than what transpired.

Apparently, Forrest Gump is smarter than most you who have responded to Dr. Laura’s “counseling.”

Posted by: milanojf | August 18, 2010 8:33 PM | Report abuse

This was not an isolated incident. Laura has an extensive history of bigotry, abusiveness, and being the opposite of a real "life coach." Now it all caught up with her. Another lowlife bites the dust.

Posted by: revbookburn | August 18, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

I trust every supporter of the first amendment -- including every supporter of the "ground zero" mosque -- will support Dr. Laura's use of the "n-word".

Thank you, Eva, for being one of the few people in the country to be consistent about the first amendment. Dr. Laura did not use the word as an epithet directed at someone; instead, she used it to make a point about how it is misused. We should be thanking Dr. Laura for pointing this out, but of course, that will be difficult after the scarlet letter "R" has been placed upon her by the resident race-baiters such as Al Sharpton.

The convergence of the mosque issue and Dr. Laura have provided a unique opportunity to examine some astounding levels of hypocrisy. Enjoy.

Posted by: diehardlib | August 18, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse


I have an exercise for you. This weekend I want you to find a night spot in DC and locate of group of black women out enjoying their evening. Walk up to the table identifiy yourself...many will draw a question mark and then say the "N" word 11 times. Do not say the "N" word articulate it out and make sure you use the same emotion and conviction that Laura used.... then ask these women were my comments provocative or racist? I am astounded that you are really asking this are unbelievable!!! Just for the record I believe Laura is a racist and that is how I interpreted her actions and that is my reality!! Eva what ever you do "Don't try to NAACP me on this". Rediculous!!

Posted by: 70chiponwhite | August 18, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

"The convergence of the mosque issue and Dr. Laura have provided a unique opportunity to examine some astounding levels of hypocrisy. Enjoy."

Yes, you would think that people who care so much about the victims of 9/11 and symbolic impact of a mosque would recognize that the victims of racism are also impacted by symbols of racism, including racial epithets.

Dr. Laura apparently carries around a list of grievances against these so-called "hypersensitive" people. So much so that she immediately assumes the worst, jumps to her preconceived conclusion, and uses that as a launching pad for her own axe grinding. I think we know who the hypersensitive one was in this exchange.

In her heart she probably knows she's a racist; thus, her guilt drives her to turn the tables and insist that the problem is with the other person. She would probably understand this if she ever studied psychology.

Posted by: writinron | August 18, 2010 10:04 PM | Report abuse

Where to begin. Ms. Rodriguez, many of my Jewish friends speak, jokingly, of belonging to the "tribe". When I speak about that community, I don't refer to the "tribe" because ... I'm not Jewish. Many of my Italian friends jokingly refer to a certain type in their community as "wops". I don't. Why? Because I'm not Italian. Many of my gay friends refer to each other as "fag". I don't refer to my gay friends this way. Why? Because I'm not gay. See where I'm going with this? Note that I've left to the end of this lesson the facts that (a) comedians using an offensive word for comedic effect and thugs in the inner city are not exactly representative of Black America, and (b) the word itself evokes one of the ugliest periods of American history and is extremely offensive to most of my Black friends. And to me. I'm actually dumbfounded that I have to explain this to someone whose last name suggests that she may be a Latina. Incredible. How are you better than that bigot, Dr. Laura? Your argument is exactly her argument. Both are utterly ridiculous.

Posted by: chert | August 18, 2010 10:24 PM | Report abuse

Please spare me the sympathy for Dr. Laura. She has never minced words and is arrogant and rude. Sometimes I agree with her but she is so obnoxious and unfeeling I feel we'll be better off without her tirades on the radio. The world is not black and white. Sometimes there is another side or a gray area and Dr. Laura does not go there. I don't think Jesus would agree with her on all her views.

Posted by: sharronkm | August 18, 2010 10:30 PM | Report abuse

bill_kfly wrote:

"A lot does not mean ALL. And she's right, a lot of black people did vote for Obama because he's half black. Just like a "lot" of black people would have voted for Colin Powell if he had ran for office as a Republican."


I've heard this argument before, and despite the fact that most Black people I know wanted to vote for Hillary Clinton, but were eventually brought around, like the majority of Americans, by Obama's rhetoric, the promise of something better and the fact that, in the Presidential election, he was up against a senile old goat who chose a buffoon for a running mate, I want to ask bill_kfly this question: does this mean that most white Americans voted for every President prior to Obama because he was white? Say it aint so!


Posted by: chert | August 18, 2010 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Please spare me the sympathy for Dr. Laura. She has never minced words and is arrogant and rude. Sometimes I agree with her but she is so obnoxious and unfeeling I feel we'll be better off without her tirades on the radio. The world is not black and white. Sometimes there is another side or a gray area and Dr. Laura does not go there. I don't think Jesus would agree with her on all her views.

Posted by: sharronkm | August 18, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

She's a bigot. No need to defend her.

Posted by: FormerRepublicant | August 18, 2010 10:54 PM | Report abuse

@chert: Bravo your argument resonates with me it is concise, poignant and straight to the point...outstanding!! And unlike myself you spelled ridculous correctly!!!
This shows that Mrs. Rodriguez and especially her (girl) Laura are a little out of touch.

Posted by: 70chiponwhite | August 18, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

to all you "wunnerful, wunnerful" LIBS/fools/bigots,

tell me: HOW do you feel about cheering for a professional football team that bears a RACIST name?

also, WHAT (if anything) are you willing to do to CHANGE the team name to something NON-racist? = NOTHING, right?

fyi, we AmerIndians feel exactly the same about "redskins" as most African-Americans feel about "the N word".

therefore, there is a word for your "fine liberals" TOO, who choose to deny the RACISM implicit in the "Redkins" team name (or who KNOW & don't care) = HYPOCRITES!

the more i learn about LIBERALS & DIMocRATS, the better i like poisonous snakes & venomous spiders.

yours, TN46
enrolled member, Tsalagiyi Nation

Posted by: texasnative46 | August 18, 2010 11:23 PM | Report abuse

"I’m no fan of the good doctor, who bills herself as a tough love life counselor. I find her unnecessarily combative, close-minded, and so lacking in empathy as to be down-right mean. But I don’t think she should have called it quits – or have been pushed out, if that turns out to be the case."

It's likely that she a money-pit, not a money-spinner, for her employer. She may be resigning prior to be asked to leave; she may be resigning for a higher-paying position elsewhere; who knows?

But for someone who bills herself as a tough love life counselor, she certainly is thin-skinned. I guess it's a little different when the gym shoe is on her foot.

"In response to listener complaints"

Free market principles in action. Lose your audience (market share), lose advertisers, you are of less value than others. The first amendment wasn't violated, the government didn't abridge her right of free speech.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Posted by: Skowronek | August 18, 2010 11:34 PM | Report abuse

Dr. Laura was totally off base as well as anyone who trys to defending her. The caller Jane went to Dr. Laura with a specific issue of racist insults she had experienced. After listening to the clip it appears that Dr. Laura was waiting to express her deep desire to say the N word and share how unfair it is for whites not to be able to say the word. Now I'm not sure why there is a sense of unfairness and or desire to say the word but she finally relieved herself shamefully in one of the most awkward live radio tirades. The very unfortunate thing about this episodes is that Dr. Laura as do many whites, completely downplay or down right ignore valid racist experiences. Jane literally described her past experiences as Dr. Laura dismissed them as over reacting and overly sensitive then re-enacted the very episode Jane had described. Now I understand that everything is a result of racism but America can and will never be able to have a real conversation and understanding about true racism when people are accused of lack sense of humor and being overly sensitive. Racial injustice and racial insensitivity no matter how you slice it is never a laughing matter and anyone who believes that this is acceptable under any circumstances is the true JOKE.

Posted by: davispayton | August 18, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

The vast left wing smear campain wouldn't accept her apology, they wanted a pound of flesh.

Posted by: Jmacaco4 | August 18, 2010 11:53 PM | Report abuse

To those who suggest that African Americans (AfAms) overwhelmingly voted for President Obama largely because his father is from Kenya (which makes him Kenyan-American, not African American), do you also think that AfAms would have voted for John McCain and Sarah Palin over any other democratic candidate?

Just considering the state of the nation as it was after 8 years of Bush-Cheney, and the fact that McCain picked someone as lame as Sarah Palin for a running mate, should suggest to anyone that the republican party had virtually no chance of winning the 2008 presidential election as long as the democrats didn't run anyone who was obviously less qualified.

But what's really telling about people who make such a lame suggestion is that they only seem to see President Obama's skin tone and none of his accomplishments.

So here's a homework assignment for those who think that President Obama was elected solely for the color of his skin:
a) Compare Barak Obama's educational accomplishments and class rank to John McCain's and Sarah Palin's (combined).
b) Compare Barak Obama's marriage record against John McCain's. (especially those who believe in the sanctity of marriage)
c) If someone told you that a candidate's unwed, teenage daughter was pregnant, would you assume that the candidate was "European American"? (this one is for those who like to complain about how under-aged, teenage moms, and their parents who fail to instill moral values, create a drag on society)

So what's really telling here is that there are people who, despite his unquestionable credentials, see nothing more than the son of a Kenyan man when they look at President Barak Obama.

BTW, I just saw a CNN interview with Dr. Laura and she simply made a fool of herself all over again despite the interviewer's grace trying to allow her to redeem herself. Dr. Laura even made it worse for herself by contradicting a fact in the interview where Dr. Laura claimed that the caller made a racist comment (regarding fear of a "black man"). The caller's comment was in response to Dr. Laura's (out of the blue) mention of President Obama.

Final thought, what if Barak Obama ran against Michael Steele or Colin Powell instead of McCain?

Posted by: SurrealAmerican | August 18, 2010 11:56 PM | Report abuse

If you don't think she's a racist, will you concede she's a fraud? Her official bio says she did "post-doctoral work" in marriage and family counseling. But in academia, one can do post-doctoral work only in the same subject in which the student obtained his or her Ph.D., meaning Dr. Laura could do post-doctoral work only in physiology. The great personal-responsibility nag lied about her qualifications as a counselor. And she lied because she could: most people are unaware of the meaning of "post-doctoral" and assume it means nothing more than "after the doctorate."

Posted by: angelas1 | August 18, 2010 11:58 PM | Report abuse


actually "post doctoral" means NOTHING MORE than "additional courses/hours" after earning the doctoral degree. = like so many "know alls" here, you "know NOT & know NOT, that you know NOT".

my degree is in Public Admin. - i have also about 30 additional hours of "Professional Education" courses at the 600 level, so that i could legitimately teach "survey courses" at the local community college.

yours, TN46

Posted by: texasnative46 | August 19, 2010 12:09 AM | Report abuse

Did you stop to consider that the "n" word - in an arguably reasonable context - was the least of Schlessinger's offenses? I don't think so.

Posted by: daphne5 | August 19, 2010 12:35 AM | Report abuse

As a w-word m-word, c-word, I have strong feelings about the use of any i-word-ing words or terms. "When we are truly c-word, we will cease to i-word each o-word." Many of my b-word friends (should that be f-word?) do occasionally use the n-word in referring to themselves (?t-word?) or others of their r-word. This always makes m-word uncomfortable. But, so does the j-word, the i-word, the other-i-word, the h-word, the a-, c-, v-, or t-word (which really gets tough when deciding what sort of restaurant to eat lunch at!). I even have problems these days telling others where my ancestors (?a-word?) came from, lest I insult some of my fellow i-word-men/women/persons.

It is tough.

Posted by: OCoillean | August 19, 2010 12:55 AM | Report abuse

The caller had what sounds like a valid complaint about her own personal situation. But instead of trying to help her figure out the best way to deal with it, Dr. Laura saw the call as an opening to rant about race-hypersensitivity.

Not that many people couldn't fairly be accused of race-hypersensitivity, mind you, but by what criteria exactly did Dr. Laura decide the caller fell into that category?

I think I found the dismissive, cold-hearted "Don't marry outside your race if it bothers you" more disturbing than her use of the N-word. Putting aside the strong possibility that the caller has some Caucasians in her family tree, by that way of thinking, maybe blacks shouldn't associate with whites at all if they're just going to complain about the slurs they expose themselves to.

Posted by: blwpyrtv | August 19, 2010 1:51 AM | Report abuse


you wrote

"A lot" does not mean ALL.

You're right, and the poster to which you responded did not say "ALL", they wrote:

"...Dr. Laura goes completely off topic to accusing blacks of only voting for Obama because he's black (mulatto to be exact but whatever)"

Tat7manlulu, didn't us ANY modifier (a lot, All, most, etc) in his/her original post.

you also wrote:

"And she's right, a lot of black people did vote for Obama because he's half black. Just like a "lot" of black people would have voted for Colin Powell if he had ran for office as a Republican."

It's hard to know exactly how my Black people voted for Obama based solely on race, but your overall point, that Black people vote for candidates simply because they're Black is completely false. If you don't believe me, ask Michael Steele (MD), J. Kenneth Blackwell (OH) and Lynn Swann (PA). Who all ran for as Governor of their respective states (as Republicans). They all lost and neither of them got a large percentage of the Black vote. Black people seem to be much more loyal to politics (Democratic Party politics specifically) than they are to race.

you also wrote
"Was she being racist? No. "

But she was implying that Black voters ("a lot" of them) are racist. Just as, when PA Gov. Ed Rendell said (in 2008):

"You've got conservative whites here, and I think there are some whites who are probably not ready to vote for an African-American candidate,"

He was accused of calling white Pennsylvanian voters racist (or at minimum implying that they were racist).

And finally, you wrote
"Just out of curiosity, how many of you dogpiling Dr. L. here were angered by Jesse Jackson saying he was "Gonna cut Obama's ba!!$ off"? What if it had been a white man?"

It wouldn't have made any sense for a white man to say it because Rev. Jackson said that he was going to cut Obama's balls off because he'd been talking down to Black people. Would a white person be angry about that? But to attempt to answer you question, the two situations aren't similar, Rev. Jackson's attack was leveled at then-Sen. Obama only. Dr. Laura's "attacked" was leveled at Black people as a whole (among other things, implying that they are racist in the way they vote), so there is more reason for Black folks to be upset with her than with Rev. Jackson.

Posted by: deke_omalley | August 19, 2010 6:03 AM | Report abuse


you wrote
tell me: HOW do you feel about cheering for a professional football team that bears a RACIST name?

I'm not from the DC area, so I don't root for any DC teams, but I did attend a university in Ohio whose mascot was "Redskins". What did I do about it? I protested (for years) asking that the name be changed. Eventually (after enough alumni made a fuss about it), the name was changed to Redhawks.

So I agree with you that the name is offensive. Who is denying the racism that's explicit (not "implicit" as you stated) in that word?

Posted by: deke_omalley | August 19, 2010 6:10 AM | Report abuse

What a loathsome, RACIST tirade! Dr. Laura was combative, insensitive, dismissive, and flat out racist toward Jade. Her argument (by the way, I thought she was supposed to be helping callers, not arguing with them) was so off topic and non-sequitur, it's almost like she was just LOOKING for an opportunity to use the N-word and rant about blacks voting for Obama. What did ANY of that have to do with Jade's original question/dilemma? Personally, I say good riddance to bad rubbish. She did the right thing by ending her radio show. No one should be spewing such garbage over the airwaves.

For the record, some black people think it's not okay for ANYONE to use the n-word, including black people. I'm one such black person. My family raised me to believe the n-word was a curse word just like any other profanity, and today, it is the MOST deplorable word I can think of. I cringe whenever I see it, hear it, and I often talk to other black people about why I don't use it and why they shouldn't either. Furthermore, I do not patronize musicians, comedians, or even watch TV shows that use the n-word regularly. Until more black people do the same, we're going to keep running into situations like this Dr. Laura fiasco, and black people who use the n-word themselves don't have a leg to stand on when they are offended by these situations.

Posted by: IAmDangerouslyInsane | August 19, 2010 6:39 AM | Report abuse

She is a racist and it cannot be covered up by some of you clowns writing here. She has long needed to end her career. The power of the purse if so evident. GM needs every friend it can get to sell cars, perhaps as a company they will stay away from offensive sponsorships.

Make cars, get out of politics!!!!

Posted by: topryder1 | August 19, 2010 7:20 AM | Report abuse

Dr. Laura needs to go! The caller, Jade, wanted help handling her husband's family. Dr. Laura made her call about black comedians use of the N word, blacks only voting for Obama because he is black and marrying outside of your race! Dr. Laura obviously has issues with blacks and that is why SHE chose to go on a tirade. FOR THE RECORD, not all black people accept the use of the N word by black comedians and we all didn't just vote for Obama because he was black! It is a shame what people, like Dr. Laura, will convince themselves of just to fit a narrative. I voted for Obama because I thought that he was clearly smarter than McCain and Palin!

Posted by: tuka_11 | August 19, 2010 7:50 AM | Report abuse

The President's reverend, Jeremiah Wright, used the N-word in THAT okay, you know, because he's black?

I think Jeremiah Wright is a racist.

If you refer to white people as "crackers", then YOU are a racist too. Cuts both ways.

Posted by: jpmenavich | August 19, 2010 8:01 AM | Report abuse

Oh, poor "Dr." Laura. Now she can only, what?--uh, run for office on the Tea Party label?....and with the wind of "N-word" controversy beneath her wings. She could go far. Poor Laura indeed, collecting a six figure income by billing herself as an advice doctor, her with her degree in physiology and her obviously limited understanding of human psychology.

Waste your pity on those who need and deserve to be heard but don't have the good fortune of being handed a microphone and the chutzpah to deliberately offend so many people.

Too many words have already been written about her, but I will add a few more because yes, I heard the radio exchange, and yes, yes, yes, it was racist, insulting, beyond belief, horrible. Ms.Rodriguez is wrong.

Posted by: martymar123 | August 19, 2010 8:19 AM | Report abuse

I remember using the n-word once when I was a child. My parents quickly let me know, in no uncertain terms, that that word was ugly and hurtful and ignorant, and that it had no place in our home, or anywhere else. It's a lesson I've always remembered.

Dr. Laura has always been a loud, abrasive radio personality whose stock in trade was meanness. She can go on being mean and rude on her own time now.

Posted by: sanderling5 | August 19, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

I am a white American who was raised in a foreign country. It wasn't until I got here to the United States that I learned about racism mostly from African Americans, not white Americans or other Americans.

I have to say that many African Americans are pushing me to be racist, so they can have yet another reason to hate and antagonize me, and feel victimized...yes I said it.

African Americans get away with too much...too many things.

So now my internal struggle has shifted from trying to have more equality in this country to just using all my energy to not be hateful and racist. Thanks black America.

Every day, every day I encounter Black people trying to F with me. Walking behind my car when I am backing up (yeah, you know it's true), walking in the middle of the streets, thinking the white man has to give them the right of way, yet not extending the courtesy to yield on the road when called for, (yes you KNOW it's true). We can go on and on, and at so many different levels.

Now, African Americans are saying that it is NOT OK for them to use the N word but still they are using it either affectionately or in a descriptive of race or in a derogatory manner, people laugh at it if used in comedy, some black people don't protest, many accept it. So basically it is a reverse racism, a double standard and mostly highly hypocritical of African Americans.

Why don't you all integrate already dammit so we can move on as Americans. Dammit dammit dammit... I am slowly becoming a republican.

African Americans have shown me why I need to stay away from you, resent you and well... that there's no way to be nice to you. Now, I do know MANY great African Americans that are just FINE people, but I bet they would probably be called sell outs or white lovers or whatever other derogatory terms African Americans have to insult and put each other down.

Yes there is a white elephant in the room and somebody needs to say something about this. Yes, we should really make a determination that nobody is allowed to use this word.

Posted by: AJAJ | August 19, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

deke_omalley; all,

to "deke": first, let me thank you on behalf of our Native nation for your efforts to change the team-name at your college! = GOOD WORK!

fwiw, i work in a LARGE "multicultural" office in northern VA & have repeatedly asked "coworkers" about WHY they aren't offended by the RACIST name, "redskins".

last season, several people's comments were:
1. WHO CARES what a bunch of (obsecenity deleted) Indians think or feel?
2. DC has used that team-name for years & years & we mean nothing OFFENSIVE by it.

i then asked them: HOW would you feel about changing the team-name to "THE WASHINGTON DARKIES"?
i was told by "one of the bosses" that asking THAT question, in itself, was "OFFENSIVE", "racially insensitive" & "would cause trouble in the office".====> the other people in the office just do NOT understand and/or CARE that we AIs find such epithets OFFENSIVE to our people/culture!

note to all: last year, a group of Chiefs of several of "The 300 Native Nations" sued in the local federal district court to get the Washington NFL team to change their name to something LESS offensive.

the federal judge DISMISSED the suit "with prejudice", saying that the Indians, who had filed the case on behalf of "their several tribes", "had no standing" to sue, as they could not prove that they spoke for EVERY Indian in the Americas!
(if THAT was the "standard" to sue, would there be ANY court cases ever decided in the USA?)

just my opinion.

yours, TN46
coordinator, CCTPP

Posted by: texasnative46 | August 19, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Who can dispute that if I - as a white person, use the n-word - its offensive. But, I do hear it frequently from the mouths of blacks. And it's not offensive? Come on! What that really says is that its not the word that is offensive, but the speaker. Thus I, as a white person, am offensive -- because I'm white. Who is the racist??

Posted by: humbleandfree | August 19, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

I disagree! Dr Laura was trained in physiology, not psychology, and therefore had no qualification - - other than a spicy (often spiteful) tongue - - for her radio show. Yet for years she delighted her "tough love" fans by shaming and belittling callers, most of whom were troubled human beings seeking compassionate advice, not a tongue lashing based solely on Laura's warped views. The only reason she had a radio show was that a sizable audience was out there to relish her nastiness. We should all breathe a sigh of relief that her show will disappear.

Posted by: ejmurphy414 | August 19, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

We put way too much emphasis on the words (sounds) and way too little on the meanings, intentions, and thoughts of the speaker. Words are simply a way to a way to transmit a thought, and can only do so approximately (two transitions - thought to word to thought) at best.

All Dr. Laura did was make the sound of the word. There was no meaning behind it other than saying the word - she didn't call anybody it, she didn't even use it in reference to anybody except saying that is what she heard.

Let me ask all of you who think that saying the word is evil, bigotted, racist, etc. - Is there any difference between using the n-word and using the word 'black' or even 'African-American' as a noun if done so in a way meant to put down someone? In a situation - Consider a homeless man who is of African decent. He asks someone for money. The one being asked for money responds with "NO, get away from me you [a. N-bomb, b. black person, or c. African American]" Regardless of word choice, the speaker is still transmitting the same message: You have too much melanin in your skin for my taste and are therefore beneath me as a person.

I think the message is a lot more harmful than the word choice.

Posted by: gregk13 | August 19, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

If you cannot see that the problem with "Dr." Laura's outburst was not merely that she used the N-word 11 times, but that she treated her black caller with utter contempt and conveyed a hateful and disparaging attitude toward black people in general, you must either be very obtuse or a bigot yourself.

I'll be generous and assume the former.

Posted by: Leanne_BWN | August 19, 2010 12:46 PM | Report abuse

If you cannot see that the problem with "Dr." Laura's outburst was not merely that she used the N-word 11 times, but that she treated her black caller with utter contempt and conveyed a hateful and disparaging attitude toward black people in general, you must either be very obtuse or a bigot yourself.

I'll be generous and assume the former.

Posted by: Leanne_BWN | August 19, 2010 12:46 PM | Report abuse

One of the things I noticed is that a lot of those sending comments were glad she was off the air. That makes me think that someone was requiring you to listen to her. If you don't like her attitudes, or her comments, DON'T LISTEN. Radios have dials, so that you are not required to listen to a specific station. I don't listen to her, not because I disagreed with her but because I found her program uninteresting as a rule. One of the late night radio programs I enjoyed so much that I used to stay up an listen to it was replace with an insipid program and host. I miss the program, but get more sleep at night now. I say again, if you don't like a show, don't listen. If the audience drops too low, it will be taken off the air. You can also write the station, network and sponsors and tell them that you will no longer listen because you don't like the host. These people pay attention. That, too, can get the program replaced. Don't wait for something like this to happen and then rejoice that the host is no longer on the air. If you listened up to that time, you are part of the problem.

Posted by: Isaldur43 | August 19, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the post by: AJAJ | August 19, 2010 10:24 AM

I'll give AJAJ the benefit of the doubt that (s)he is not just trolling here...

Most of AJAJ's complaints seem to be about inconsiderate people who happen to be AfAm. Anyone who traveled around the country could find the same behaviours in any poor neighborhood (low income, inferior education, and high crime) where you have a very high concentration of one ethnic group. Even so, this doesn't mean that everyone who lives in such a neighborhood is just as inconsiderate.

In California there are poor ethnic neighborhoods that serve as ghettos for Asian people, Latino/Hispanic people, Pacific Islanders, Russians, as well as "whites" and other groups. Just pick an ethnicity and find where an associated gang dwells. I haven't been there in nearly 30 years but South Boston ("Southie") was a good example of a "white" ghetto where you would find the same behaviours that you attribute only to AfAms.

People who use the "n-word" are either hateful, ignorant, and/or inconsiderate of others (and themselves for that matter). It doesn't matter whether the person using the word is an AfAm or not, it's just as tasteless and self revealing as someone who regularly uses other profanities. Also, it does not matter whether they use the "..gger" or "..gga" form of the word.

By the way, I don't think that being a racist is a requirement of the Republican party so don't let that stop you from joining them. If you looked hard enough you'll find racists in the Democratic party, TEA Party movement, Libertarian Party, and even Independents.

Posted by: SurrealAmerican | August 19, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

"....a word so grotesque, so hurtful..." oh for God's sake, lighten up. It is a rude word, that's all, just rude like many other words. Why have people given this word so much power? The common use of this word in song and comedy un-empowers it; why is that so horrible? You know what is a grotesque and hurtful act of rudeness to me? Road rage; it kills people. Let's put things in perspective.

Posted by: lightenupalready | August 19, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

I was shocked a few years ago when I listened to Dr. Laura. I was SHOCKED to hear that she was NOT a homophobe as she was portrayed. She has offered advice to gays and lesbians as well as heterosexuals, and has dispelled many erroneous assumptions held by her listeners.
I say this because I misjudged her years ago. I agree with Ms. Rodrugues' assessment. Its so much easier to jump the gun and yell "j'accuse" than to listen to what is truly being said.
Dr. Bill Cosby has made similar statements as those by Dr. Laura, and was also criticized, but certainly not run out of the entertainment industry.
Have the other commenters *listened* to the exchange? It was awkward, but certainly not racist. Don't throw out the message because you dislike the messenger.

Posted by: dzenglish | August 19, 2010 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Eva- You clearly wrote this before watching the rest of the story unfold. This person was not hounded off her show because of criticism--she has stated that she is quitting the show so she can freely speak her mind, including hateful and bigoted speech, without her sponsers being affected. She claims she is taking back her 1st amendment rights to say whatever she wants without any repercussions. Still feel sympathy for her? Your kneejerk reaction is not worthy of a journalist--follow the story for a day before you write.

Posted by: reasonableMe | August 19, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse


Your post was almost a textbook illustration of the Strawman fallacy.

First, you introduce someone to the conversation that no one is discussing (Jeremiah Wright) as if he's somehow relevant. To my knowledge, Rev. Wright hasn't spoken publicly about Dr. Laura. if he had, you'd be perfectly justified in calling HIM out on HIS hypocrisy. But to introduce him here as if to say that since there's a Black person who's said racist things, it's OK for a white person to do it as silly argument.

On top of that, you make a bunch of accusations about him that not only is no one disputing, they simply aren't relevant.

Let's just say that I stipulate that ALL THREE of your points are 100% valid, OK?

1. "Jeremiah Wright, used the N-word in THAT okay, you know, because he's black?"

Let's say that it's NOT OK for him to do it.

2. "If you refer to white people as 'crackers', then YOU are a racist too".

Let's say that I agree with this 100%, referring to white people as "crackers", does make one racist.

3. "Cuts both ways".

And let's say, finally, that I agree with this -- it truly does "cut both ways".

Let's say that I agree to ALL of that, what does that have to do with what Dr. Laura said or did? Do you really think that way to defend one person against a charge of racism is to simply introduce another racist to the conversation? If you were defending a client against a murder charge, would you simply introduce the juror to a murderer from a totally unrelated case and expect the jury to let your client walk?

Finally, you wrote:
"I think Jeremiah Wright is a racist."

Duly noted, but what does this have to do with Dr. Laura?

Posted by: deke_omalley | August 19, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

I have kicked people out of my home for using the "N" word out of context.... and for MANY other words as well. HOWEVER, Dr. Laura was making a POINT and it was valid. If she'd been in my home when she went on her "alleged rant" I'd have given her two thumbs up for her analogy because she hit the nail on the head and was RIGHT ON THE MARK.

The key to the discussion was this, "I don't get it. If anybody without enough melanin says it, it's a horrible thing; but when black people say it, it's affectionate. It's very confusing." I agree!

The bottom line is this. It's a WORD. Nothing more, nothing less. If the IDIOTS who are rising up and taking offense to a word that was used as an example to express the double standard which DOES exist in our society don't get "IT" you can't help them.

I LIVE in Georgia, but that's not where I was born and/or raised. I am repeatedly called cracker, peach, or red-neck in jest by people who don't live in this region (usually either people of color or ignorant Yankees who don't realize those words are offensive).

I know a few REAL red-necks and good 'ole boys who would call those "fighting words." I shake my head when I see how IDIOTS react vs. respond to some ignoramus who thinks they're being "cute" OR who is deliberately, with malice aforethought (which was NOT the case with Dr. Laura), trying to get a rise out of someone. Only a fool will give the ignoramus who uses such terms what they're really looking for... an argument.

Not once in my lifetime have I taken offense to the above words although they have been used as a pejorative on many occasions. Call me a cracker, I say "Got cheese?" Call me a peach (used frequently with me because I have RED HAIR), I say "Got ice cream?" Call me a red-neck, I say, "Gee! Did I blush?"

My mother taught me (well) that "sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me." I simply don't care when someone uses a stupid word, whether in jest or as a mean spirited poke at me. They are WORDS people! That's it.

I also have enough intelligence and self-respect that I don't have to worry about IDIOTS who think (or hope) the utterance of a mere word will send me reeling.

Dr. Laura is many things.... sometimes harsh, sometimes abrasive, but always, always, she is careful to be clear, concise, and REAL. She's NOT a "shock jock" but she will use whatever words are appropriate to make IDIOTS think for themselves and stop whining about their miserable lot in life. We ALL have misery. Deal!

Apparently, we still have too many IDIOTS in this country who can't/won't/don't take the time to LISTEN and HEAR what people say IN CONTEXT. No matter what you say, they are determined to be offended.

All I say to this ridiculous commotion over a simple conversation which was totally in context is "convince a fool against his will, he'll have the same opinion still."

Now all you childish whiners get out of my cracker face and find something REAL to discuss.

Posted by: Empowermom | August 25, 2010 7:25 AM | Report abuse

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