Friday, August 13, 2010

Let's Talk About Dr. Laura

And if you haven't heard of her, you live in another country or you don't spend as much time in your car listening to the radio as I do.

Dr. Laura is judgmental and self-righteous, sometimes downright mean and apparently also a racist. ( Dr. Laura Schlessinger's N Word Rant)

She's also right about some things.  Oh dear Lord, not the N word.  What was she thinking?  Oh I know - she was thinking she can say and do anything because she is so wonderful.  Honestly I think that is a big part of her problem.  So many people call in and write in to tell her how wonderful she is and what a savior she is, she has come to believe it.   It's very dangerous to start believing what complete strangers say about you. 

But this is what I think she's right about:

Instead of blaming all your relationship problems on the other person, ask yourself why did you choose that person?  Even if they are completely totally evil, insensitive, "controlling", whatever, what is wrong with  YOU that you chose that person?  Really, believe it or not, that is where you find your power.  If it's ALL on the other person than you are a victim and have no power to prevent the same thing from happening again.  Contrary to popular opinion, being a victim is NOT a good thing.  Own your own crap and you find  your power.  That's the part that Dr. Laura does not explain as well.

Everyone talks about how bad, stupid, controlling, abusive, deadbeat, men are, but women are controlling, mean, manipulative and abusive in relationships as well.   But nowadays mean, bad, stupid and controlling women can blame it all on the man.

Love alone is not sufficient to make a marriage work.

Divorce is not good for children.   Moving from one house to another constantly is not good for children.  Bringing other men and women into their lives is not good for children.  The fact that you are "happy"  "fulfilled"  "in love" does not mean it is good for your children.  

Being raised in childcare is not good for children.  I know I'm going to get flack for this but I know this.  I know this from my own experience, I know this from what I see around me, I know this from people who work in day care.  Okay you are the exception and you can write in the comments about how wonderfully your child is doing in daycare.  I still know what I know.

If only we could get someone more compassionate, and less judgmental and mean (and now racist) than Dr. Laura on the radio to say these things.  But then, of course no one would listen because the reason most people listen to her is that they like to listen to her yelling at and humiliating other people.  She thinks she's so successful because she's helping people.  She's so successful because we live in a culture of voyeurism.  The irony is that her show contributes to (and profits from) the very ugliness in this culture that she likes to decry.


  1. I am a Dr. Laura fan; with the codicil that I take the good and leave the bad. I am the mother that I am now because I started listening to her. She is also very compassionate towards children and is a devoted child advocate on her show.

    I also stand strongly on the personal responsibility pedestal...there are very few actual victims in the U.S. We make ill-advised choices and the consequences, good and bad, are ours to own. I've tried to teach my children that.

    But, as we all know, every person is flawed. I didn't hear the "rant," but I also hear that she apologized. Doesn't make it right, but maybe she learned from her mistake, just as the rest of us have to do.

    Thanks for this, Joelle. I always enjoy your posts.

  2. hmmm, I'm not a fan here, although, like you, I do think she says some things that are right. But I think one of the reasons she is popular is that some people like to have their prejudices toward others confirmed. What you say about victimhood is right. Too bad she doesn't say it that clearly.

    her opinions also lend credance to the views that there is no need for any sort of social justice initiatives, since people are poor because of their own choices. There are no larger societal implications...

  3. Yes I think her N word rant was more about her lack of vision of larger societal problems like racism than actual racism on her part. And as far as her apology I give it a big fat FAIL because she printed a letter from a fan gushing that she was no racist along with the apology. One of her problems is that she thinks she knows everything. Well she's not black, she doesn't know what it is like to be black in this country and she should listen a little more to someone who is before going off on them.

  4. Your last paragraph says it all. I guess it is the same reason that the TV commentators on FOX and MSNBC get viewers. My husband and I agree with a particular MSNBC host in general ways, but, as he says, that person would be more effective and consistent if he didn't stoop to the same level as the people he criticizes.

    I really dislike the tone of voice of those who seem like they know it all and look down on the rest of us. I hear this tone by some speakers on some "Christian" radio shows that my sister listens to. Sorry, anyone who takes that tone isn't showing love.