I’ve been listening to Dr. Laura off and on since the late 1990s. Like many of her fans, I was recently shocked by the “N-Word Scandal”, and moreso by her resignation from talk radio.
Considered by immoral leftists to be one of the pinnacles of that evil monster “Conservatism”, Dr. Laura made a name for herself advocating traditional values and common-sense approaches to problems. “Stop Whining”, “Shacking up”, “I’m my kids’ mom” and other phrases were a staple of her show, and it never got old.
Today, I read a blog by Roger Ebert where he claims America is being intolerant of Muslims’ right to insensitively build a Mosque and ground zero, and then in the next breath hammers Dr. Laura for her insensitive use of the “N-word”. I wasn’t very familiar with his work, but a quick read through the blog reveals him as a blind follower of the “anti-Right” movement underfoot in our country. Who can blame him for being inconsistent? Leftists cherry-pick their ideals like Democrats cherry-pick their platform.
Dr. Laura wasn’t perfect, as none of us are. There were the nude photos of her (leaked by an angry ex) that caused a stir a few years back, and I’m sure not a day went by that some listener or other didn’t get offended by how harshly she dealt with a particular caller, but Dr. Laura, despite being human, was pretty consistent. At those times where that consistency revealed she was heading a little off track, she did something that is quite super-human in ‘individualist society: she admitted she was wrong.
That’s the thing that really sticks out to me about this whole “N-word scandal”. I don’t at all agree with anyone, regardless their color, using that hideous word. It isn’t funny when a comedian says it, and it isn’t appropriate when a professor uses it. It wasn’t either of those things when Dr. Laura used it to drive in a point with that caller.
The thing about it that stands out is that Dr. Laura immediately apologized. She didn’t issue some well-planned statement at the urging of her boss or audience members, she apologized because she knew it was wrong.
There was also no blame in her apology. She didn’t make her poor actions someone else’s fault. She didn’t try to justify it.
What happened as a result of her apology baffles me. It seems that, lacking the opportunity to “demand an apology”, the usual 15-minute famers (and Sharpton) looked for another way to whine and complain, and found it in the accusation that there “needed to be more dialogue”.
What does that mean, exactly? Someone did something stupid – said a few bad words, realized their mistake and apologized. What more needs to be said?
Those who are most vocal of the Dr. Laura issue are on the “Left”: they are those who have always hated her (though never listened to her), those whose hedonistic and damaging lifestyles risk some dings and bruises under her “tell it like it is” broadcasts, and those who like to place blame – the same folks who are always blaming everything on the last president, the big church on the corner, their parents, the oil companies, fast food and “the Right”.
I see in the differences between these folks and Dr. Laura that one side embraced personal accountability. One side embraced apology. One side was humble enough to admit wrongdoing and accept criticism. That side isn’t the one who wants to lynch Dr. Laura.
I’m going to miss her. She was one of the last sensible voices remaining in media. I fear the world my children will grow up in, absent the Ann Landers’ and Dear Abbys’ and Dr. Lauras’.