Tuesday, June 5, 2007

please please please please stop using that word!

I read a blog today that used the phrase "so retarded," and I wanted to scream. Here was a 30-something mother with years of school beyond college who couldn't think of a different word than one that outwardly slams a group of people by using their disability to name-call. Didn't she simply mean stupid? Would she call my son, who is mentally retarded, stupid? No. First of all because he isn't stupid, and second of all because that would be mean and immature. And because she has a vast vocbulary and a thesarus at her fingertips, she should be able to think of some other way of expressing her opinion.
I know that some of my friends use this word frequently, and I have been a big chicken and not said anything, because I don't want them to feel bad. And I still don't. Because people don't mean any harm, not usually anyway. So I'm sorry for bringing this up on my blog for all to read. But it's supposed to be about my life, (right?), and the roller coaster of emotions that being a mom brings to the table. So if "retarded" is part of your vocab, there is no need to apologize. Just please, please stop using that word.

6 comments:

SB said...

AMEN, lion...AMEN!
I have publicly corrected and educated people for years. It's almost impossible for me NOT to say something when they say that.

But like someone once told me, "Ignorance is correctable" Stupidity is permanent." At least we can CORRECT the ignorant folks among us.

Kristiem10 said...

Oh, it burns me up when people say that! My own niece says it. I have said, "You know, your cousins are mentally retarded. You probably should find a new word."

Jennie said...

I don't say that word because I am ignorant OR stupid. I say it because I IN NO WAY associate it with people who have developmental disabilities. I say it because it's not Peka's job to tell me what to say. And I say it because, to me, it represents a succinct way to get a point across. I am very, very sorry that it bothers people, especially some of my favorite people on earth, but I HONESTLY don't say it with any connection in my mind with anyone I've ever known. Maybe I should start saying "Busheded" instead? That would obviously be a better descriptor for intentionally ridiculous acts.

cws said...

When my kiddos were younger it really offended me too and it still does if I see it in print. But as people around me still say it I have gotten immune to it. They know I don't like it much and they refrain from saying it around me.

Laura said...

I don't like that word, either, and although I'm not usually brave enough to critique people when they use it, I did get Chris to stop using it. And all because of you :)

Linda said...

apparently, you pushed the right button...it's a nasty word. The are so many other words and phrases that could be used. You don't even have to be educated to come up with something else. You can say, That's just wrong, that's silly, that's ridiculous, that's stupid (although that word is taboo in my house, as well as the word dumb). When you use the word retarded, it seems to me that you are TRYING to draw attention to yourself by using a hot-topic word that will make people cringe or double-take.