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Dr. Laura Invades Canada

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(Toronto)  A suburban Toronto television station says it has bought the Canadian rights to the Dr Laura TV show.  CHCH which broadcasts across Ontario as ONTV says it will begin showing the controversial show in the fall, and offer it to other Canadian stations including one in Vancouver.

Judgment Day
Toronto gays expressed shock and outrage at the announcement.

The station say it is aware of the anger the announcement caused, but it bought the show in January before the protests against the homophobic broadcaster began.

The company which owns CHCH, WIC, was recently blasted by the Canadian Association of Broadcasters for her anti-gay remarks on their Toronto radio station, Talk640, and ordered to apologize on the air.   The order instructed the station to read an announcement prepared by the CAB telling listeners the station had violated the industry code.

Laura Schlessinger, the CAB ruled, had violated the broadcasters' code of ethics, had capitalized on putting Dr in front of her name when she is neither a medical doctor nor a psychiatrist, and had violated the rights of gays and lesbians with her words.

CHCH television boss Roy Gardiner told the station will tape-delay the broadcast and will have a staffer remove offensive comments.

Gay member of the provincial legislature George Smitherman, reached by where he was appearing in the Windsor Gay Pride Parade, was outraged.

"Dr Laura sells a certain brand of intolerance that has little place in Canada" he said.  Smitherman, who is the "point man" for the opposition liberals said "Canada is a country that is founded on the principal of freedom of speech and we'll just want to watch closely to ensure that any comments that she makes which reflect intolerance and bigotry will not go unchallenged."

Toronto gay activist Bonte Minnema told "I'm shocked that they would announce it just before Toronto Pride at a time when the community is celebrating who we are.  It's a slap in the face!"

Minnema says local activists would be meeting to organize protests.

American demonstrations have targeted Paramount television, the producer of the show in Los Angeles, and CBS stations which have agreed to run the program.  Several sponsors, including giant soap maker Proctor and Gamble pulled out of the show because of its content.