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Caller says she was hurt by Dr. Laura's use of the N-word

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Dr. Laura caller doubts apology
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Nita Hanson called Laura Schlessinger for advice on racial comments
  • The radio talk-show host ended up using the N-word repeatedly
  • Schlessinger apologized but Hanson says she ought to have known better
  • Schlessinger, 63, came under fire and said she would end her show

(CNN) -- The African American woman who called Dr. Laura Schlessinger for advice and heard the radio talk show host use the N-word 11 times said Thursday that she was confused and hurt by the call.

"I was calling her to get some help," Nita Hanson told CNN's "American Morning." "I did not expect to hear the things that she said to me."

Hanson called Schlessinger August 11, seeking advice on how to deal with racist comments from her white husband's friends and relatives. The conversation evolved into a discussion on whether it's appropriate to ever use the N-word, with Schlessinger arguing it's used on HBO and by black comedians.

National furor erupted after Schlessinger ended up using the word 11 times during the five-minute call with Hanson.

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"It's never OK to use that word," Hanson said. "I have a problem with Dr. Laura because she's old enough to know better. She knows where that word came from."

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The embattled Schlessinger, 63, announced Tuesday she will not renew her contract that is up at the end of the year, telling CNN's "Larry King Live" she wants to "regain my First Amendment rights."

Schlessinger apologized for her remarks but Hanson said that was not good enough.

"I think she apologized because she got caught, to be honest with you," Hanson told CNN. "At this point, there's nothing she can do for me."

In announcing her decision "not to do radio anymore" after being in the business for more than 30 years, Schlessinger said, "I want to be able to say what's on my mind and in my heart and what I think is helpful and useful without somebody getting angry or some special-interest group deciding this is a time to silence a voice of dissent."

Hanson said Schlessinger's offense went beyond using a derogatory word.

"She said I shouldn't marry outside my race," Hanson said.

Hanson has been married three years and called Schlessinger for advice after she kept hearing her husband's friends make comments about black people. She listened to Schlessinger's show all the time and trusted her, Hanson said.

"It's very hurtful," Hanson said.

Schlessinger told CNN Tuesday that while she was still "regretful" over the incident, she feels her freedom of speech rights "have been usurped by angry, hateful groups who don't want to debate -- they want to eliminate."

"I decided it was time to move on to other venues where I could say my peace and not have to live in fear anymore," she said.

 
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