Silencing Dr. Laura

  Last Tuesday, hundreds of homosexual activists gathered outside of Paramount Pictures' headquarters in Los Angeles. They were there to protest a newly syndicated television show hosted by Dr. Laura Schlessinger. The stated motive for the protest was opposition to what the marchers called "hate speech" by the talk- show hostess. But what's really going on here is the attempt to suppress all opposition to homosexuality. Schlessinger, an Orthodox Jew, has a radio audience of 18 million. A big part of her popularity is due to her insistence on strict standards of right and wrong. Callers are often told to take personal responsibility for their actions; and Schlessinger speaks out against our culture's moral decline. She has addressed homosexuality with sincerity and candor, telling listeners that homosexuality is a "deviant behavior" and "a biological disorder." But she insists that homosexuals are "entitled to love and respect" just like everyone else. Hoping to build on Dr. Laura's success, Paramount signed her to an hour-long daytime broadcast picked up on more than 160 TV stations, reaching 90 percent of American households. And that's when the fur began to fly. Activists demanded that Paramount cancel the show. And if they refused—which they have so far—then the activists would boycott the show's advertisers. Gay-rights groups consider Schlessinger's views on homosexuality—views shared, incidentally, by millions of Jews and Christians—as hate speech. David Lee, the producer of the sitcom "Frasier," told protestors at last week's protest that Paramount has behaved "irresponsibly by giving a platform to a woman who is hurting the gay community, literally." His word, "literally," is in reference to the activists' contention that even raising moral objections to homosexuality inevitably leads to violence. Yet, for her part, Dr. Laura recently issued a statement in which she denied any intent to "hurt anyone" or contribute to "to an atmosphere of hate or intolerance." Of course that is not her intent. But this protest isn't about intolerance. It's one more attempt to purge from public discussion all views on homosexuality that differ from those of the activists. It's an example of what Jean Bethke Elshtain of the University of Chicago calls "liberal monism." Unlike pluralism, which our founding fathers promoted and which tolerates many views on a subject and invites discussion of different points of view, monism is intolerant of opposing points of view. It excludes the possibility of good-faith dissent, seeking instead to impose its own brand of orthodoxy on the rest of us. And the liberal and gay activists seem oblivious to the absurd irony in all of this. Take the case of the government official in Europe who denounced Mr. Haider, the Austrian with a Nazi past who was elected to office in his country. "We will not tolerate intolerance," he thundered. And he did it with a straight face. If you want to express your support for Dr. Laura, call us here at BreakPoint and we'll give you the information you need to contact Paramount studios. The tactics being used against Dr. Laura today show how vicious gay rights activists can be. And if they succeed in silencing her, just imagine what they'll do to those who don't have 18 million loyal fans.


Chuck Colson



  • Facebook Icon in Gold
  • Twitter Icon in Gold
  • LinkedIn Icon in Gold

Sign up for the Daily Commentary