The notorious “r” word is a word that pollutes the ears and vocabulary of people of all assorted ages. The “r” word being the slang term of retardation or retard has no longer been acceptable in federal health, education and labour policy. So why does the word still exist? The word 'retard' exists as a derogatory term to classify something as being any variation of dumb or stupid. Medically, the word was used to define an impaired person but now is being replaced by “individual with an intellectual disability”.
For a kid growing up in the 90’s, I often heard the word ‘retard’ from friends on the schoolyard inelementary school. My mind subconsciously accepted the idea of the word existing only to remain as something to say when I reacted irrationally to something that upset me. Unfortunately I made the mistake of saying it before I knew the definition around my mother who was a developmental service worker. With that being said, we had a nice sit down where she put it into a perspective I could understand:
Following that conversation I gained a better understanding of having respect for individuals with disabilities and refrained from using the word ever again.
Rosa’s family who helped introduce the bill to the senate
That was back then, this is now. In the 21st century, governments are able to crumble at the hands of a social net-worker and colored people are voted into presidency which is a pretty good statement that says how far the human race has come in terms of equality. In 2009, two college students decided to focus on the word after interning at the Special Olympics. They decided to run pledge drives which had an impressive turnout of 30 schools running pledges in different ways. This later developed into the signing of “Rosa’s law” which was passed in 2010 by President Barack Obama to abolish the word being used in federal lexicon.
So where do you stand? Do you believe such actions should be taken to abolish one word? If you do, join the movement and PLEDGE to end that one word.