Retard: a word not to be used lightly

at a young age i was taught to never call someone a retard.  my mom works with special needs kids now and then worked in social work. 

now i’m not a fan of political correctness the majority of the time.  but that’s typically in terms of people need to be able to say what the feel and think.  but when it comes to the word retard, i take immediate offense.

the other day i heard countless people throwing that word around like it meant nothing; like it was a joking matter.  “you’re more of a tard than i am!”  no.  no no no.  let me explain why i take offense at that word.  my best friend in the entire world, her sister is severely autistic and mentally retarded (that’s the real way to use the word).  when Jenny was born, her brain was 2 inches thick because of hydrocephalus.  spinal fluid squished her brain into almost nothing.  my other best friend, her brother Josh has downs syndrome.  my mom works with kids who have autism, downs, lower IQs, NF, and all sorts of other things.  a family at my church has a down syndrome baby.  i run races for autism.  i help my mom with the kids she works with and let me tell you this, i like them more than i like you. 

Jenny is adorable.  she can’t say much, but she can put a puzzle together faster than you can imagine.  Josh is a lover and a good friend.  he loves the Lord more than any other person i’ve ever met.  he’s passionate.  little Jake is a funny little man who has downs.  he knows just when to blow a raspberry in church.  Bryan loves to take pictures and gives the best hugs.  Ryan loves to dance with my mom in the hallways at church.  Jason, who has autism, put shampoo in his hand for the first time and had two families run a 5k just for him.  little Christopher knows how to cheat and use the clock to put numbers in order.  sneaky little man that uses his resources.

after reading all that, do you still want to call your friend a Tard or a Retard as a joke? 

thinking about this and how much i hate it and want to slap everyone that uses it in that manner made me realize that i should never say “that’s gay.”  because it’s the same thing as using retard. 

have respect.  mentally retarded people are some of the best people in the world because while we hate and pick on others, they just love.

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