Dr. Laura apologizes for saying N-word on the air

Dr. Laura Schlessinger poses during her morning talk show Feb. 17, 1998 in her Los Angeles studio. In four years of syndication, Schlessinger has reached the top of her profession, with ratings above that of talk radio king Rush Limbaugh. Her delivery seesaws between caustic and compassionate, but the message never waivers: character, conscience and courage. (AP Photo/Susan Sterner)

August 13, 2010 5:52:55 AM PDT
Talk radio host Dr. Laura Schlessinger has issued an apology for saying the N-word several times in an on-air conversation with a caller that she said was "hypersensitive" to racism.

Schlessinger said on her website Wednesday that she was wrong in using the word for what she called an attempt to make a philosophical point.

"I articulated the N-word all the way out - more than one time," Schlessinger said in comments from the opening of her radio show that she posted on her site. "And that was wrong. I'll say it again - that was wrong."

She said she "realized I had made a horrible mistake, and was so upset, I could not finish the show."

Schlessinger said she pulled herself off the air at the end of the hour.

During the exchange on Tuesday's show, Schlessinger said the woman who called herself Jade was too sensitive for complaining that her husband's friends made racist comments about her in their home.

When the woman asked if the N-word was offensive, Dr. Laura said "black guys say it all the time," then went on to repeat it several times.

Schlessinger did not direct the epithet at the woman, but said she used it to suggest how often she hears it, and that it should not automatically be cause for offense.

When the caller objected, Schlessinger replied: "Oh, then I guess you don't watch HBO or listen to any black comedians."

Schlessinger also said that if the caller did not have a sense of humor about race, she shouldn't have entered into an interracial marriage.


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