Dr. Laura Show Ending

Radio host Dr. Laura Schlessinger is quitting her radio show following a firestorm over her use of the N-word.

Radio host Dr. Laura Schlessinger is quitting her radio show following a firestorm over her use of the N-word.

Dr. Laura Schlessinger, the conservative talk radio commentator under fire for repeatedly using a racial epithet, announced on Tuesday that she was ending her long-running radio show.

Dr. Schlessinger made the announcement on Tuesday night on “Larry King Live,” saying she made a decision not to renew her contract when it expires at the end of the year and suggesting that she did not want her opinions and language, however provocative, to be muzzled.

“I want to regain my First Amendment rights,” she said. “I want to be able to say what’s on my mind and in my heart and what I think is helpful and useful without somebody getting angry, some special interest group deciding this is the time to silence a voice of dissent and attack affiliates, attack sponsors. I’m sort of done with that.”

But she stressed that she was not retiring, only ending her show, and would continue to write books and appear at speaking engagements.

“I’m not quitting,” she told Larry King. “I feel energized actually — stronger and freer to say the things that I believe need to be said for people in this country.”

Quitting a talk show so you can say what’s on your mind is akin to resigning a governorship to have more impact on public policy.  But, hey, it’s all the rage these days.

Even back in the days when I was listening to conservative talk radio for hours on end, I was never a Schlessinger fan.  She always struck me as bitter, mean, callous, and particularly out of touch with the human condition.   She routinely dispensed advice that was plainly idiotic and hurtful.

It didn’t help that she billed herself as “Dr. Laura” for a show built around personal counseling, even though her doctorate is in physiology instead of psychology, psychiatry, or something else that gave her the slightest bit of expertise in the field.   Then again, real counseling experts don’t offer diagnoses based on three-minute telephone conversations.

FILED UNDER: Media, Popular Culture
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. “I want to regain my First Amendment rights,” she said. “I want to be able to say what’s on my mind and in my heart”

    Umm, isn’t that what she was doing on the radio show ?

    Oh I get it, she want’s to be able to speak out without anyone calling her out for it when she says something stupid.

  2. mantis says:

    “I want to regain my First Amendment rights,” she said. “I want to be able to say what’s on my mind and in my heart and what I think is helpful and useful without somebody getting angry, some special interest group deciding this is the time to silence a voice of dissent and attack affiliates, attack sponsors. I’m sort of done with that.”

    Don’t you know the 1st Amendment guarantees right wing radio hosts can say whatever they want and no one else can voice disagreement? If you have a problem with what a radio host says, you are taking away that host’s right to free speech. Obvious, really.

  3. Franklin says:

    How is it that someone like Dr. Laura still doesn’t understand the 1st Amendment and who it protects against? Calling yourself a doctor implies that you have some sort of education.

  4. reid says:

    This “N-gate” (yikes!) controversy was my first taste of her, and she is just awful. Who would listen to this harpy? I’m sure there are many “3-minute doctors” who actually do a good job. That Dr. Drew guy from the old MTV show, for example. He actually seemed knowledgeable and gave sound advice. “Dr.” Laura seems like more of a bossy gossip queen. Ugh.

  5. Michael Reynolds says:

    When I go to hell my hell-wife — providing an eternity of misery — will be either Dr. Laura or Nancy Grace.

  6. floyd says:

    Micheal;
    So … Old Nic is a misogynist?

  7. Herb says:

    A band called Clutch had some great lyrics about the esteemed doctor.

    “At times I’m even tempted to seek the advice of Dr. Laura
    But I ignore her”

    Should be real easy now…..

  8. Kevin says:

    In the phony world of conservative punditry, Dr. Laura is one of the few who actually speaks her mind (as opposed to saying only what advances some agenda). Why didn’t conservatives stand up for her? Because a few years back she renounced religiosity (specifically, her conversion to Judaism), and this offended many fundamentalists, for whom she had become a special project.

  9. reid says:

    Michael: Good lord, Nancy Grace may be her equal. Good call. Speaking of good calls, maybe you could call Nancy’s show and start a little discussion about race…? I kid… mostly… Sad what’s become of “the HLN”.

  10. John from WuzzaDem says:

    ******In the phony world of conservative punditry, Dr. Laura is one of the few who actually speaks her mind (as opposed to saying only what advances some agenda).

    Looks like that turned out to be kind of a problem, eh?

    ******Why didn’t conservatives stand up for her?

    I would say that standing up for someone’s “right” to spew nasty epithets without worry of being criticized isn’t exactly smart…but then I saw the threads at HotAir and Michellemalkin.com. No worries, plenty of racists on the right fighting for “free speech” (or something):

    http://hotair.com/archives/2010/08/18/dr-laura-quits-radio-to-regain-my-first-amendment-rights/comment-page-1/#comments

    http://michellemalkin.com/2010/08/17/dr-laura-announces-end-of-radio-show/

    Make sure to catch this gem from the comments at Michellemalkin:

    “I used the N word and most people I know use it as well.”

    But, hey, it’s all about “free speech” and fighting “political correctness”, right?