Spread the Word to End the Word

by Jenn (eating bender) on March 7, 2012

There are a lot of causes I feel passionate about, but this one in particular strikes a personal chord.

Today is the day to pledge and be heard. Spread the Word to End the Word is out there raising awareness about the use of the R-word, and how it needs to stop.

We all know someone who has said (or says), “That’s retarded” or “You’re such a retard.” Perhaps that someone is you. I am not trying to personally attack you, but I do want you to understand my and 250,000+ other people’s point of view. At this day in age for our society, any derogatory use of the R-word is either a showcase of ignorance, or just plain mean.

And at the risk of offending you or your friend, I think it’s time to grow up.

EDITED TO ADD: This article from CNN does a fantastic job of explaining why the R-word is so hurtful to people like me. Thank you, Ellen Seidman, for being far more eloquent than I could ever be.

In fact, here’s her video. I encourage you to watch – it’s very powerful.

Next time you catch yourself or someone you know using the R-word, correct it. Don’t just stand idly by and let disrespectful and hurtful terminology stay out there in the universe.

Speaking up is the absolute biggest difference you can make. Well, that and taking this pledge:

I pledge and support the elimination of the derogatory use of the r-word from everyday speech and promote the acceptance and inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities.

Go to the website. Take the pledge. Tell everyone you know. Your support means so much.

Let’s make an impact, both on March 7th and every day moving forward. I thank you, my family thanks you and most importantly, this guy thanks you. Because the thought of someone using the “R-word” against him now, and especially “back then,” makes me sick.

We’ve come a hell of a long way. It’s time society did, too.

If you sign the pledge, let me know in the comments! I am truly grateful for your support.


1 Erica March 7, 2012 at 1:27 pm

Doing it :)

2 Jenn (eating bender) March 9, 2012 at 11:12 am

Thank you, Erica!

3 Susan March 7, 2012 at 7:59 pm

Count me in! By the way, love your Christmas outfits. I think I had a similar sweater. :)

4 Jenn (eating bender) March 9, 2012 at 11:13 am

Haha – they are classic. :) Thanks for signing the pledge!

5 Melissa @TryingtoHeal March 7, 2012 at 9:55 pm

I’m in!

6 Jenn (eating bender) March 9, 2012 at 11:15 am

Thanks, Melissa!

7 Emily March 7, 2012 at 10:56 pm

I read about this earlier today. I HATE the R-word!!! I haven’t used it in years!!! I am really bothered when people use the R-word so I love this campaign!

8 Jenn (eating bender) March 9, 2012 at 11:15 am

Thank you, thank you, thank you! That means the world to me. :)

9 Samantha March 9, 2012 at 10:00 am

I am moved by this post, and even more moved by this new look!

10 Jenn (eating bender) March 9, 2012 at 10:04 am

You are fantastic. :)

11 Lauren March 9, 2012 at 10:05 am

Jenn, I’m with you 100 percent.

12 Jenn (eating bender) March 9, 2012 at 10:07 am

Thank you, Lauren! You rock.

13 Danielle March 9, 2012 at 11:08 am

Pledge has been signed. This is such an important cause, thank you so much for posting about it.

P.S. Your re-designed blog looks BEAUTIFUL.

14 Jenn (eating bender) March 9, 2012 at 11:16 am

You rock – thanks, Danielle! And I’m SO glad you like the new design!

15 Joy March 10, 2012 at 7:45 am

I will go sign it now. I am certain that I’ve never incorrectly used that word. My mom was a special needs teacher. My first “boyfriend” was down syndrome (I still love him) my BFF as a child was a kid who was “physically retarded”. (clearly I spent more time in my moms classroom than my own). People who spend any time with me know: I don’t care if you swear like a truck driver (I’m known to from time to time) but do NOT misuse retarded, do NOT use the n word (there isn’t a proper use for it so I won’t type it) and do NOT use God’s name in vain…
I think all of them make the speaker look trashy and I don’t spend my time with trashy people!

16 Jenn (eating bender) March 11, 2012 at 10:23 am

That is fantastic, Joy. I couldn’t agree more about your qualifications – I’m certainly known to swear like a truck driver once in a while, too. 😉 Thank you for sharing your story!

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