Who Cares About Girls?

Lisa Ling.

But what critics wanted to know was if she regretted leaving “The View’’ in 2002 to toil on documentaries like the obscure cable network Oxygen’s new series “Who Cares About Girls?”

“Not these days,’’ she quipped about her decision to leave before the Rosie O’Donnell days of sparring matches between Rosie and, well, a lot of people.

Instead, the Sacramento native has been kept busy with more serious pursuits. In the first two documentaries in this new series – which begins airing in March with a look at young girls whose mothers are behind bars and is followed by “Hidden Away: Slave Girls of India’’ in late spring.

So does it bother her that a session about such serious subjects elicits questions about “The View’’?

“I’m as much a pop culture junkie as anyone,’’ Ling says. “It’s unfortunate that a little more attention can’t be focused on these issues. I sometimes get a little annoyed when I want to talk about work I’m doing and (journalists) want to talk about `The View.’’’

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