Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Hardest Part...

I feel the need to continue with my earlier entry.  Just in case I didn't make it clear how disgusted I am with society that there are actually people in this world who believe that it's okay to use the word retard.  The more I think about the movie "The Change-Up," the more irate I get. 

One of the hardest parts for me in dealing with Kennedy's diagnosis is the future.  Not being able to protect her from all of the cruel people in this world.  I don't want to see her to be made fun of for being "different" and I sure don't want to have to hear her being called a retard, because of her disability.  I want so badly to be able to protect her from having to deal with inconsiderate and uneducated people in this world, who believe it's okay to belittle or demean individuals with disabilities.  This word is used far too often in society, with out any repercussions..  I was standing in Target the other day, and a young mother exclaimed, "This cart is so retarded!"  I know that she didn't mean to insult Kennedy, or any individual for that matter, but that word is hurtful! 

I didn't know a lot about individuals with Down syndrome before I had Kennedy, but I can tell you one thing, I would never have referred to them as retarded or "Downsy" the way it was portrayed in the movie "The Change-Up."  Anyone who knows Kennedy, or anyone else with Down syndrome, knows that there is something special about them, even at such a young age.  Along with that extra chromosome comes a whole new level of sweetness, lovability, and  the innate ability to see the good in all people.  And what do they get in return?  Degraded and belittled?  It's not acceptable in today's society to use racial or religious slurs when talking about people, so why should it be okay to use them when speaking of the disabled. 

What disgusts me even further is the people who condone this type of behavior.  These are the people that I feel I need to protect my daughter from.  And there are a lot of them out there.  The people who don't see this as a big deal, are the ones who probably use the term so loosely.  Guess what?  I bet their children don't have Down syndrome, or another disability, because if they did, they wouldn't be speaking that way.  So far, one of the hardest parts for us as parents, is knowing that we cannot protect Kennedy or other children from hearing these things.  Slurs are not acceptable any time, but especially not when you're talking about a baby with a disability.  Kennedy isn't old enough to take a stand for herself, and let her voice be heard, but as her mother, I can assure you that I will be the voice for my daughter and I will take a stand against disability slurs.  What will you do?

Universal Studios has responded to the actions of hundreds of people's complaints and criticism about their use of the word retard, by blocking their Facebook wall for people to post on, as well as disabling their email account.  Have they acknowledged their wrong doing?  Of course not.  At least GQ magazine made a public apology, although forced.  Universal Studios has not even admitted any wrong doing.  I know that the movie has been released, and it's too late for those who have already seen it, but I'm begging you - PLEASE boycott this movie.  Do not put money in the pockets of those who find it perfectly acceptable to demean individuals, specifically babies with Down syndrome. 

I am once again asking you to PLEASE "LIKE" the page "Stop Disability Slurs" on Facebook, and learn what you can do to do your part in ending the "r-word."

Now, as I promised earlier, more pictures of Kennedy.  Does this look like a child who is suffering to you?  Look at her adorable face.  How can anyone tell me that it's OKAY to refer to children like her as retards.  Believe it or not, there aree a lot of people out there.









5 comments:

  1. I also simply cannot believe that it is still socially acceptable to use the r-word. You are an amazing mama to one very amazing little girl.

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  2. I am doing what I can to promote to everyone the disgusting language in this film. My daughter, also Kennedy:) is 13 and has CHARGE syndrome. This language is 100% unacceptable - I hope this film falls on its face.

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  3. I am doing my best to let everyone know not to support this movie. The language they are using is simply unacceptable. My younger sister has some developmental delays and I would hate for her to be talked to that way. Perhaps, if we really make an impact on the ticket sales for this movie, Universal Studios will learn their lesson!

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  4. Great post and adorable pictures!

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  5. Great post! My cousin in law has down syndrome and he is a special person in our lives, like you said in your blog ... They only see the good in people and he's always so happy to see his family... And I DO NOT like the word retarded nor do I tolerate it from anyone I know

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