God bless you if you don’t use the R-word or any other demeaning slurs leveled against disabled people.
But first, let’s take a walk down memory lane.
America Has Been Fighting For Equality Long Before Your Grandma And Grandpa Were Born
Workers fought for fairness, women fought for voting rights, blacks fought for equality, LBGT people are now deeply involved in their own equality struggle.
But why have we not paid attention to the needs of the disabled? Some people think it is funny to call people retards, or use –tard as a suffix.
Then we have words like ‘slow’ and ‘mental.’
We like to be seen to recognize the accomplishments of these people, but have no problem using slurs used against them in our posts and general speech.
What level of ignorance is this?
Maybe it’s something else. For decades, these words have been abused to where they seem normal.
But to a disabled person, such a word would be an accurate description. So, it’s not the funny insult the rest of us might consider it to be.
Nobody Chooses Disability
We all want to be normal and fit it, or excel in a way that makes us stand out from everyone else.
Many will say they do not mean any harm when they use these words.
We won’t deny that.
But I would like to point out that you are still causing harm. So, now you know.
If a normal person gets hurt by the word even though it is not true, imagine how deeply that word must cut someone who knows for a fact it applies to them.
Retard Is More Than A Word. It Is A Bad Label That Demeans Someone Substantially
You magnify the distance these people already feel exists between them and the rest of the society.
And you know what makes it worse?
These people might not stand up and say using the word is wrong. The last thing they want is to create an even greater distance between them and other people.
Having learned to put up with so much, disabled people often consider suffering through such insults part of their condition.
They have learned to see people look down on them and call them many things, directly or indirectly. They know they have to prove themselves to be more than the disparaging labels society gives them to challenge this horrible tradition.
Today, we have a prominent model with Down Syndrome and an attorney with autism. Then we have savants like Kim Peek, or Rain Man if you like.
Also Remember Stephen Hawking And His Unmatched Intelligence.
These people are slowly helping us realize that disability is no limitation. They have outdone the masses at their chosen lines of work, and any normal person would think twice before using the “R-word” on these people.
It should be like that with everyone.
In this life, what we have are just limitations. Humans of all kinds can achieve whatever they put their minds to, regardless of how unusual their minds, emotions, or bodies might be or seem to be. So, put aside the disabled slurs.