NPR logo Dr. Laura's N-Word Defense, 'Black Guys Say It,' Only Partly True


Dr. Laura's N-Word Defense, 'Black Guys Say It,' Only Partly True

NAACP members hold a public burial for the N-word during their annual convention in Detroit, July 9, 2007.  Carlos Osorio/AP hide caption

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Carlos Osorio/AP

Dr. Laura Schlessinger so quickly realized she was wrong to repeatedly use the N-word on her syndicated radio show the other day, she beat a hasty retreat, wasting little time before apologizing to her audience.

Schlessinger was trying to make a point to a black woman in an interracial marriage who called in seeking advice on how to handle her husband's friends who sometimes make racist comments in her presence.

As the Associated Press reports:

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.

It seems more than passing strange that a black woman would be calling Dr. Laura to ask if the N-word is offensive. But we'll let that go.

Also worth noting was Schlessinger's assertion that "black guys say it all the time."

Well, some do. Some also wear their pants so low you can see their underwear.

But I'm guessing Dr. Laura isn't saying that behavior is worth emulating.

The truth is, many blacks don't use the N-word. We just don't. We want no part of it.

We long ago concluded that it debases anyone who uses it, even those who freely cast it about as a 'hood term of endearment.

There've been a few well-publicized funerals to emphasize the widespread desire to be rid of it. That should say something about how much so many people want the word to be a thing of the past.

At the next N-word funeral, maybe someone could throw in the coffin with it the lame rationale that "black guys say it all the time" which Schlessinger was only the latest of many to use.