I've noticed on the downsyn website a lot of people complain about the use of the word retard in media. They've wrote numerous letters of complaint to companies about toys and movies using it.
obviously everyone has their own feelings and opinions on what words are acceptable and those that are not. But i have trouble seeing where they find a problem
When i was younger i used the word retard freely as do most children, and yes i still use it. If Saul's winding me up, hurting himself repeatedly and not learning from it, I'll say 'stop being retarded'
The dictionary definition of retard is to slow down or hinder progress.
Saul does not hinder our or his progress in life, our lives carry on as normal like they did before he was born, thus he is not a retard. I have never seen him as a retard and nor does my partner. He is just Saul, with out the Downs he wouldn't be Saul, but it does not suddenly make him a retard.
So all the people that complain extensively about the word retard being used, must feel that their child hinders life and is a retard. I think they need to think more positively.
I can certainly see what you're saying. But the problem lies in the way words and their meanings change over time. Dictionary definition aside, the sad fact is (like many other words) "retard" is not generally used as a nice phrase anymore. It's used as an insult. And therein lies the problem.
But I'm glad to hear that at least there's some people out there who do realise the real meaning, and use it within the correct context.
mashpotato....so just outta curiosity knowing the EXACT dictionary definition if someone were to see you and your child out in public and said...OMG look at that kid, he looks like a RETAAAAAAAARD! It wouldn't bother you???
my whole point was the word retard has no attachment to a child with Downs. If someone were to say my child were a retard i would happily point our the dictionary definition and the fact that he in no way is a hinderence to me. So he could not therefore be called a retard.
you can't change everyones views such as the elderly are more likely to say downs children are mogrels as that was the name for them in their generation. If someone were to say to you, you have a mongrel child i'm sure you would point out they were infact a Downs child. You don't have to take offence to it
I understand that might seem silly Andy. Kids and ignorant adults use the term constantly in that manner though. Many people look at children with downs as being slow...and many people's word to describe that slowness would be a retard. I'd be offended by the word no matter how it was used around me.
When we were younger my family always had this thing about calling eachother a mong or a spaz. It was never said nastily and I supose at that age we did know what spastics were and what was classed then as mongs.
Its something that has stayed with all of us, and then the guilt my dad had when we had just found out about holly when he shouted to his dog " Calm down you mong!!"
The look on his face... I couldn't stop laughing...
What I am waffling on about is... it depends who says it and in what context. If my family call each other a spaz or a mong I won't find any offence in it... but if a stranger in the street says it I would be really upset and angry...