Many already know by now that Dr. Laura on August 12, 2010 went on a “N” word rampage while taking a caller’s call on the Dr. Laura Show. She used the “N” word over 12 times, by my count. What is equally offensive is her on air insult of one of the nation’s oldest civil rights and human rights organizations, the NAACP.
A caller called in to ask a question related to race. During the discourse with the caller, Dr. Laura berates her for too much sensitivity. It turns out that Dr. Laura could stand a little sensitivity. Dr. Laura admonishes the caller to not take things out of context. She next says “Don’t NAACP me” further adding racial insensitivity to the already hot flames. That was the first time that I heard the NAACP used as a verb. Perhaps, Dr. Laura thought it was cute and catchy. It is disparaging to an organization that has fought for civil rights, human rights and social justice for over 100 years. No matter what Dr. Laura may think, the NAACP has been instrumental in fighting for and bringing about racial and social change in this country. There is no place for Dr. Laura to discredit, belittle or disparage the NAACP name while repeatedly using the “N” word in the same breath.
Dr. Laura’s “Don’t NAACP me” statement is also offensive to the sponsors of the NAACP. Media Matters for America has called for a boycott by the advertisers on Dr. Laura’s show. Recent advertisers include Pfizer, Chase Bank, NetFlix, Motel 6 and Home Depot according to Media Matters. Strangely enough, at least, one of the sponsors of the NAACP is an advertiser of Dr. Laura’s show. Pfizer has been a sponsor of the NAACP for several years on health and wellness of African Americans by promoting health advocacy. I call on readers to join in Media Matters call for a boycott by her advertisers. I further call on the NAACP to urge its sponsors to remove all advertisement from Dr. Laura’s shows. It is incongruous for any past or present NAACP sponsors to be affiliated with both Dr. Laura’s show and the NAACP.
While Dr. Laura has apologized, sanctions are appropriate. When athletes engage in improper actions, they are fined, suspended or worse. When Janet Jackson had her wardrobe malfunction on Super Bowl XXXVIII, the FCC fined the network. Well, we should fine, suspend or do worse financial harm to Dr. Laura and her show. I call on everyone who cares about stomping out racial insensitivity one step at a time to begin stomping here and now. Contact Pfizer.com to end all ties with Dr. Laura’s show. Pfizer’s mailing address is: 225 E. 42nd Street, NY, NY 10017 (212)733-2323.
Let’s do a Laura on Dr. Laura.
Washington, DC based Debbie Hines. Esq. writes on race, law, women and politics. For the best of Legalspeaks, click on Res Ipsa Loquitur.