It’s Not About The First Amendment

Here’s an article about Dr. Laura Schlessinger’s decision to give up her radio show in the wake of the controversy arising from her use of the N-word on one of her recent shows. In discussing her decision, she told Larry King, “I want my First Amendment rights back, which I can’t have on radio without the threat of attack on my advertisers and stations.” I don’t normally like to be a nitpicker, but this is not about the First Amendment. The First Amendment only prohibits state action. It doesn’t prohibit private citizens from getting upset over remarks and complaining about them to sponsors. And it doesn’t prohibit sponsors from dropping a personality in response to the outcry. And it doesn’t prevent a radio station from choosing another option, especially if the original personality can’t get sponsors. I am sure that people will come down on both sides of this debate – some will deem the Dr. a victim of political correctness, while others will conclude she got what she deserved. But in either case, let’s not drag the First Amendment into this.