Monday, March 30, 2009

Spread the Word to End the Word -- 3.31.09

On March 31, join youth and actor John C. McGinley in a day of awareness for America to stop and think about our use of the r-word. Our language frames how we think about others. Help eliminate the use of the r-word in everyday speech. Stop yourself, stop your children, and stop others from using the word "retard" and "I am so retarded". Each and every time I tell someone not to use the word in my presence because I find it offensive, I am quickly met with "I'm sorry" and "I didn't mean any disrespect" -- I know that, and if I can get that one person not to use the word again, or at least to be more mindful the next time he/she uses it, I will have succeeded in my mission.

I've been told by some that we're trying to tackle the impossible because "retard" or "retarded" has just become too acceptable a term in our everyday language...and I always say that I'm sure some people said the same thing about those who confronted the use of the n-word and every other popular put-down phrase that came before/after. What I realize is that those who want to continue to use these terms freely must be met with more passion, dedication, and commitment to stopping its toxic spread. Pledge to stop the use of the r-word and encourage inclusion of all with disabilities.

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