Thursday, October 25, 2012

Ann Coulter says the r-word is not insensitive


Here's Ann Colter on Inside Edition, defending her tweet about President Obama being a "retard."

This isn't just about Ann Coulter, though I personally find her vile. What she's articulating is the same thing people say over and over again: "To an actually mentally disabled child, it would be mean to call that person anything. But I'm not talking about a literally mentally disabled person...."

She also noted, "I can't stand political correctness."

Yep, heard that all before. A lot.

What she and others refuse to accept is that "retard" is a slur. It demeans an entire population of people.

You think a word that refers to people with intellectual disability as stupid does much for how people perceive my son, Ann and all the other naysayers?

You should get to know a child with a disability. You should parent a child who has a disability. And then, see how you feel.

29 comments:

  1. She also said on the Alan Colmes show "Retard has been used colloquially to just mean 'loser' for 30 years." Loser??? The more she talks the worse it gets for her.

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  2. I completely agree with what you are saying. People with mental impairments deserve respect.
    Your video is beautiful!

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  3. Further proof that she's a lost cause.

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  4. She's not worth it. If we all stopped giving her attention for this, maybe she'd stop saying it? Also, who is she to decide what I find offensive?

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    1. I'm obviously not of the mindset that we're fueling her career by calling her on this. If anything, I think this is going to hurt her career. A Facebook friend from Canada just posted that she was disinvited from speaking at the University of Ottawa. She will surely lose other paid gigs.

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  5. A few years ago for Halloween I dressed up as Ann Coulter- the DEVIL! If I still lived somewhere that celebrated Halloween, I'd resurrect the costume, though it's doing the devil a disservice.

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    1. Brilliant! I think I still have time to put that together.

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  6. I have a few slurs I'd like to use about her.

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    1. One thing I always think about people like this: You must be a deeply unhappy person to spread so much hate around. I am far happier than she'll ever be. Max, too. We win!

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    2. Yes, we win. Because we love our children. But Ann Coulter? I am sorry but I am having a hard time not being angry and absolutely floored that she is so intent on being right that she cannot see the harm she is perpetuating.

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  7. Ellen, that video is brilliant. Straight to the point, no excuse, just don't say it, easy. I guess I am lucky that I have no idea who this lady is and I don't want to know either.

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  8. According to etymology.com, the word retard has been used in OFFENSIVE meaning since 1970. I wasn't able to find an entry for dumb blonde. Thankfully, no one respects, or listens to Ann Coulter. Keep up the great work, Ellen! Great video, too.

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  9. *sigh* The whole defense of the word "retard" as an insult is stupid. It's not like the English language lacks insults. If you choose to use that word, when you could just as well use any of 100 others, in the knowledge that a large segment of the population finds it extremely offensive, you are being uncharitable and unkind on purpose. You can try to defend your use of the word, but even if you succeeded, you would still be doing something wrong by using it!

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    1. *sigh* The purpose of an insult is to be "uncharitable and unkind on purpose" but you are ok with it as long as you pick from "any of 100 other words that a large segment of the population finds extremely offensive".

      Do you realize that ANY insult is doing something wrong?

      Why do you people feel that as long as you substitute a word that doesn't bother in place of this one word that does, that everything is fine?

      A don't say "oh if you loved someone with a disability you would understand" because I am disabled along with several family members and longtime friends. One slur replacing another does not rectify the act - it only makes it more palatable to you.

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  10. Awful! Why does TV bleep out the cussing & not allow certain shows to be played until after a certain time? HOWEVER THEY DO NOT CARE ABOUT THE WORD RETARD??? DOUBLE STANDARD SOCIETY SO PATHETIC!!Not OK to insult the most vulnerable people. The r word needs to be treated like another cuss word on TV. You,Dave, Sabrina & Max are smarter than she ever will be because you don't use bad word to hurt people. I believe people with disabilities deserve fair treatment. People aren't allowed to use the n word about blacks. should be the same for people who are cognitively challenged.

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  11. People I know who are otherwise intelligent and usually sensitive continually make excuses for their use of this word. Like Ms Coulter, they insist that their using the word as an insult had no link to my son or any other people with disabilities. It's so frustrating and demoralising that I no longer bother to communicate with these people, no matter how "politically correct" they may be in terms of other slurs.

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  12. She's right. On the occasion I use the word "retarded", I am making no reference to intellectually impaired people. It's only a slur because you choose to associate your son with that word yourself. Not saying that people don't use it to refer to those with intellectual disabilities, but it really is all about context.

    FYI I have CP myself. Before you tell me that I don't know what it is like...

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    1. Really??? Just, really??? A lot of people are going to think less of you for using that word. Do yourself a favor and drop it from your vocab.

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    2. Actually, I don't believe they do at all. Should I drop "lame" from my vocab because I can't walk and may offend myself? Or should I get offended when someone says they are "spazzing out" when 'spastic' used to be the word used to describe people with CP? Get real. I choose not to take offence to such things because I know people are not referring to me or my condition when they use them. Retarded is the same.

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    3. Yes you should drop those words too. And so should we. We need your support on this. The word, words are why you do not get the same respect as other individuals without disabilities. The word affects attitude. Next time you are brushed off or ignored or next time someone speaks to your companion instead of you, consider why? Attitude.

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  13. A word is a word is a word... The broader issue should be how the level has been lowered in issues of political debate and slurs have replaced intelligent discourse. I have commented before about how I am against banning any word on principle - it's only a few steps from burning books - although I do not use the word "retard" or "retarded" personally. Focusing on one word is not addressing the issue, because unless the underlying mentality is changed, new slurs meaning the same thing will spring up in its place. Your posts about your son have helped me (and many others, I'm sure) better understand the reality of people with special needs, and see them as more the same than different, but your posts on political correctness just irk me because they seem polemic without offering any insight as to the real nature of the problem and how it can be addressed.

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    1. No one wants to ban the word. Just asking people to stop using it. Of course it is because of the underlying issue, you get it. But many people don't - as is obvious. The real issues for example? A young girl with Down syndrome denied hearing aides because of assumed cognitive difference. "she's retarded, what difference does it make" this happened last month in Glendale CA to a young mom with a 3 year old girl who had gone three years with a known hearing loss and this was the reason given. Would this irk you? It does me. Thanks so much for not using the word.

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  14. I could not agree more that the bigger issue here is how our society treats people with special needs. Yes, new slurs will crop up. But this issue matters to me because it's personal, for all the reasons I've said. And so sometimes I choose to just speak out against a slur, period. I do have a post (well, only in my head right now) about what will actually help. I'll put it up next week.

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  15. I agree that retard is demeaning but food for thought, I said people were "lame" all the time, my word of choice, until I made a good friends who's daughter had cerebral palsy and couldn't walk. Every time that word came out of my mouth I felt bad and thought of her. I replaced it with "dumb" and realized that it too was a reference to a disability to those who can't speak. Stupid, Idiot, so many things that we'd just say with no thought have come originally from words describing those with disabilities. It would really hurt me to hear someone call my son with autism retarded. But, it hurts just as much if someone called him stupid or idiot. When people are intending to insult someone maybe their word choice doesn't matter as much as their intent to hurt.

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  16. Lovely video. It made me cry! The music is perfect!

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  17. Ann Coulter is just mean and despicable but she has always been that way, and the older she gets, the meaner she gets. That "mean girls" schtick might have been cute in the last century, but that was then, this is now. She'll never get it. She will continue to be a bitter, angry, screeching old scold, she'll suck back her chardonnay and cigarettes, and she will die alone without a soul to care about her. She's a sideshow, not a person. She's made her bed. Whenever I see her scary face on the TV (not often as we have Fox News blocked from the cable--there are impressionable children in the house) I pick up the remote and change the channel. She doesn't get any play from us whatsoever. No exceptions. She's not just mean to disabled people, she's mean to gay people, Democrats, liberals, anyone who doesn't think in the sick, vicious, "I've got mine--screw you" way she presents herself. She dresses like a twenty one year old who's trying to pick someone up at a bar -- and she's NOT twenty one and you can tell. "Walk of shame"/moderate-priced hooker clothing is NOT a "look"-- particularly for a woman of her advancing years. People are too polite to mock HER for looking like a pathetic "Desperate Ambrose" or old streetwalker but they really should take the gloves off and give her a taste of her own medicine every now and again. Not that it would do any good--you can't teach "class" or "taste" or "decency" and she lacks all three in spades.

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  18. okay "new here" ~ I forced myself to actually watch the video.. (about a.c.) I've never seen her speak, only read what she said. Anyway, Inside Edition Interviewer says "don't you think thats insensitive" & she actually said back... "to whom???" I suppose 6,500,000 people & their families are just invisible to her..

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  19. Ann Coulter stepped over the line. And I hope she loses her job and her network loses affiliates. And she's forced to apologize on the air. I am in broadcasting, the stations I engineer for are disabled owned. And there is standards and practices clauses in our contracts with networks and programming suppliers. If our stations aired Ann, the plug would have been already pulled and she'd be gone from our air. Disability related insults are covered in our programming and network affiliation contracts. And enforced strictly.

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Thanks for sharing!



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