Signing Off

Dr. Laura Schlessinger Ends Radio Show

Maybe she and Don Imus can start a club. After igniting a storm of controversy last week when she used the N-word eleven times in five minutes on her radio show, Dr. Laura Schlessinger announced Tuesday night that the firestorm has persuaded her to quit the program. “The reason is, I want to regain my First Amendment rights,” Schlessinger said. “I want to be able to say what’s on my mind…without somebody getting angry.” Schlessinger, speaking on Larry King Live, said she would not renew her contract, which is set to expire this year, and admitted that she was trying to make a philosophical point by using the N-word but went about it the wrong way. The Dr. Laura Program has been no stranger to controversy in its 16 years of syndication; criticism reached another boiling point in 2000, when Schlessinger called homosexuality “a biological error.” Her program remains popular, though, pulling in 8.25 million listeners per week in more than 40 countries.