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Dr. Laura: No Second Thoughts

August 19, 2010: Dr. Laura Schlessinger tells the Los Angeles Times that she made the decision to leave her radio show on Friday, after the "n-word" controversy that blew up into national news. Schlessinger announced Tuesday on CNN's Larry King Live that she'll leave her long-running show when her contract is up at the end of the year.

Schlessinger told the Times' Steve Carney, "I was just sitting here, looking over the ocean. It was sort of a peaceful wave of awareness -- an inner voice just said, 'We're done with this.' The second it came over me, I felt very energized."

Schlessinger on August 10 used the n-word a number of times in an exchange with an African-American caller who'd asked for advice on handling what the caller saw as racist comments from her white husband's friends. Schlessinger never directed the word at the caller, but said it several times to illustrate a point about the acceptability of the word from African-American entertainers, and also told the caller she was being hypersensitive. Schlessinger apologized in her opening comments on August 11.

Activist group Media Matters began publicizing a transcript of the exchange with the caller Thursday, and the story soon became national news. On Monday, Media Matters, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, and other groups said Schessinger's sponsors were endorsing "hate speech." Media Matters VP/Research & Communications Ari Rabin-Havt told the Times Schlessinger's leaving radio was "the logical end to a chain of events set off by her rant last week."

Schlessinger on King said she feels her First Amendment rights were being interfered with on radio, and that she will focus on her books and online projects. She said, "I want to be able to say what's on my mind and in my heart."

Schlessinger's radio career spans three decades; for the past year her show has been syndicated in a joint venture between Talk Radio Network Ventures and her own Take On The Day.




(8/20/2010 6:55:05 PM)
I AM NOT A STRONG FAN OF DR. LAURS, BUT IN THIS DAY AND AGE, THE WORD SHE USED SHOULD NOT BE THAT BIG A DEAL. YES IT IS NOT GOOD TO USE IT, BUT AS WE HAVE BEEN TOLD, THAT WORD IS USED BY MANY ON THE AIR, AND ON STAGE. BASICALLY WE COULD START GETTING ANGRY OVER THE W WORD...AND THAT WOULD BE VERY TAKEN BY MANY AS WRONG. WE NEED TO GROW UP AND MOVE ON IN LIFE. THERE ARE SO MANY OTHER ISSUES THAT ARE MUCH MORE IMPORTANT...BLESS DR. LAURA AND HOPE SHE RETURNS TO THE AIR ONE DAY. PENNY GILMORE P.S. I LIKE PEOPLE OF ALL COLORS IF THEY ARE GOOD AND TRY TO HELP IN THIS SAD WORLD.

- PENNY GILMORE

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