Dr. Laura on 'Today': The gift of inartfuness, and more on that n-word controversy

Among her talents, Dr. Laura Schlessinger has the unique gift of inartfulness. It’s a word she herself used during this morning’s Today interview with Matt Lauer to describe the infamous use of the racially charged n-word on her radio show that led to her move to Sirius XM. Schlessinger discusses the incident in her new book, Surviving a Shark Attack (on Land), explaining that left-wing hysterics hijacked the narrative of that incident, and she told Lauer that her actual “point was well made, but it was inartfully made.”

I was inclined to actually agree with her to a certain extent. (After all, she did not direct the epithet at anyone.) But then she capped her exchange by saying, “I had to go on Sirius XM, or something like that, in order to have freedom of speech without being assassinated.” To be clear, she was referring to character assassination, not actual life-threatening assassination. But a week after the Tucson tragedy, I’m not sure such figurative use of the word is particularly sensitive or appropriate. Like I said, inartful.

Did you catch Dr. Laura’s interview? Check out the entire clip below. Have you ever seen a guest overpower the going-to-commercial music like she did? And is she intentionally inartful or inadvertently inartful?

More Dr. Laura:
Dr. Laura Schlessinger to end show
Dr. Laura Schlessinger apologizes after using racial epithet

Comments (27 total) Add your comment
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  • Bea

    Laura Schlessinger is a hateful, judgemental, mean spirited narcissist. To label her rants “inartful” is far too generous. God pity those people who are unlucky enough to be related to her.

    • Karate Pants

      “Inartful” isn’t even really a word. It’s just a nonsense term created by lawyers.

    • Strepsi

      Dr. Laura Schlessinger is a C-word.

    • Eddie

      Thanks for making her point. I don’t have any respect for her.. BUT the problem with all the new language control is this. The people who demand it refuse to hold the people they like to the standard. So its not really about getting along at all its about scoring points. Palin says nothing about AZ shooting for 4 days, even as the same media that attacks her is begging for a quote, questions her silence. Then she does a simple video after everyone has spoken on the topic expressing her sadness for the tradgedy and pointing out that before we had a name, she is being blamed, using blood for political explotation and she gets attacked for not being silent. I am tired of the double standard. Dr Laura should never have used the “n” word but that goes for muscians who use it just to sell records too. I agree that rhetoric has gone too far but that includes the President who called people enemies and talked about bringing metaphorical guns to politcal fight. I mind the newspeak when it is used by one group to avoid talking about real issues like a debt we can’t afford and regulations that destroy employment market etc. I am tired of us creating ways to avoid communicating, which is not always a pretty process, but is needed.

      • Jonathan

        as far as I know the only reason Palin’s video was met with such hostility was because she used the phrase “blood libel”. Look it up if you don’t know what it is.
        Palin is in idiot and all she does is dig a deeper hole for herself by always saying inappropriate things.

    • caryn

      Agree -she’s pretty awful. My sister loooves listening to her and I’ve been trapped in the car way too many times trying to cover my ears, think of something else, hum to myself… anything avoid hearing “Dr” Laura’s poison.

  • Matt

    She’s part of the problem and deserves to be ignored.

  • Gary

    I watched her a little later on the Hoda and Kathy Lee segment, and I swear after she was done and as the started to go to break that Hoda (I think) said “She was awful!” and then Kathy Lee started to say something but the break started. I kept going back to listen but could never hear it clearly. Anyone else hear that?

  • Karate Pants

    I wish the dreadful butterfly on her dreadful sweater would flap its wings and fly the crusty, bitter, hateful, shriveled-up bag of bones far, far away.

    • Karen

      Well said…(^^,)!!

  • joe

    It just goes to show you that you can have zero to offer and someone will pay for it. Anyone one else see a Sirius XM boycott in her future????

  • stephen

    Like Rush, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin and Bill O’Reilly… Stop talking about them and giving them a platform to spread their hate. Only the uneducated could be so easily manipulated by their brainwashing.

  • Pat

    For many years, this one has put her foot in her mouth. If you ask me she had too many years of freedom of speach..she should have been stopped years ago with her rederick.

    • lynn


  • kaydevo

    Ugh. She’s just AWFUL.

  • deegeezee

    why doesn’t anyone in the media understand what “freedom of speech” means?

    it protects you from the government punishing you for speech, not from ordinary people protesting. gah!

    • Gloria

      Freedom of speech allows you to speak freely, and it specifically protects political speech. But the point the Absolute Free Speech supporters miss is that you can say what you want but be prepared for the consequences. Also some speech such as libel or slander is not protected as well as speech that incites violence

  • S

    I sometimes listen to her because she comes on after another show I listen to on Sirius. She is so shockingly nasty that it is hard to look away. It’s funny to me how anyone would SEEK advice from her.

  • Sara

    I think she’s just a jerk, plain and simple, and she’s bad at hiding it. I suppose one could call that “inartful”.

    Whaaaa–sick of all these right-wing talking heads complaining about taking crap for saying incendiary things. I mean, it’s in your line of work–freedom of speech works both ways! Don’t dish it out if you can’t take it!

    • Strepsi

      THANK YOU. No one ever said Dr. Laura should be silenced, or that Sarah Palin should be silenced.

      Everyone agrees those two a-holes have the RIGHT to say what they want – but these “professional victims” can’t accept that there might be CONSEQUENCES to what they CHOOSE to say.

      Or, to put another way, I uphold your absolute Freedom of Speech, but please consider whether there are things it would be wise not to say.

  • Rimlit

    Truly a face for radio. YIKES!

    • caryn


  • John

    Would love to have a video camera when she and Howard Stern arrive at the water cooler at the same time.

  • RM

    I wonder what Dr. Laura’s response would have been if it had been an interfaith couple say with a Jewish wife and a Christian husband. Since Dr. Laura is Jewish I doubt she would have advised the wife to just put up with her husband’s christian friends making anti-semitic remarks. She probably would have advised the wife that her husband was being disrespectful and she shouldn’t tolerate it.

  • Mel

    @Jeff Labrecque … Views like yours are the reason trashy vicious racist like laurie still get paid for being the mouth piece for this small minded group of people in the World…your admittance to agree with any bit of what she says tells more about YOUR views than you realize. Just for comparison if we substitute the N-word for the Jewish derogatory term, the K-word. How would you and Laurie feel? Don’t forget it wasn’t that long ago when Jews were attacked in a similar way as Blacks… Let’s not forget that it is factual that the African Holocaust lasted hundreds of years longer than the Jewish one. Laurie believes her people are excepted as White…for now.

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