The R-Word

A cause that has completely changed my view on what we say.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” -The First Amendment

In the First Amendment, we are given the right to be able to say whatever we want. But, does that mean we can say whatever we want?

Not really. We can’t just say whatever we want. Because on the other end, someone is listening to you, and they are human and have feelings too.

If you didn’t already know, the r-word is — retard (ed)— . The r-word is both insulting and derogatory.
Usually most of us use it as an insult. But why should it be an insult, its someone’s mental state, and we have no right to make fun of it.

AND I don’t recall the First Amendment saying that we have the freedom to hurt other people, physically OR mentally.

You don’t hear people calling other people suicidal as an insult. You don’t hear people calling other people depressed as an insult. These are mental illnesses, and the r-word is simply just another one.

It is also preferred by some that you use the words intellectual disability rather than mentally retarded.

When you call someone the r-word, you are hurting two people:

  1. It’s hurting someone who is actually mentally retarded because the way they are should not be made an insult. (It is not like they chose to be that way, don’t make them feel like an idiot.)
  2. It’s hurting the person you are insulting! (Spread Happiness, coming soon)

So join me, and many others, to stop the r-word. And it shouldn’t end there, stop using any mental illnesses as an insult. The first step is to stop yourself, and then stop others around you. We as a team can make a change.

Below is a link to the official petition page where you can sign the petition to stop saying the r-word. I encourage all of you to go sign it. Let’s make a change.

I pledge and support the elimination of the derogatory use of the r-word from everyday speech and promote the acceptance and inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities.

And, please, please do not sign it to just sign it. Understand that you are promising to stop using this word in the wrong context. Understand that it is not just your name under some words, it is a promise. There is no point in signing it for your name to be there, sign it and take it into effect.