A couple of months ago, Rick and Wanda Felty started a grass-roots campaign
to educate and inform the public that the use of the word “retard” or “retarded” to mean a bad thing is wrong. Not only because it perpetuates prejudice and discrimination towards people with disabilities, but simply because when its used in an ugly way it hurts individuals and families of those with disabilities.
Currently there is not a national civil rights figure or spokesperson to point out that using the “R” Word is wrong. All we have is ourselves. It is time for those of us offended by the thoughtless use of the word “retard” or “retarded” to stand up and say this hurts people with disabilities. It is time to make our collective voices heard.
This site is an effort to help individuals and families of those with disabilities by letting them know its OKAY to speak out when you hear the “R” Word. Together we can make a difference.
I pledge that I will not use the words "retard" or "retarded" to mean "stupid." I understand that this is hurtful to people who have disabilities and people who love them, so I will be careful with my words. I will also try to remember to pay attention when other people use these words, and I'll ask them to stop.
Ben Stiller's new movie, Tropic Thunder, is making this campaign more visible. In the movie, Stiller's character is an actor, and has made a previous movie, Simple Jack. The tag line for the Simple Jack movie-within-a-movie is "Once upon a time...there was a retard." As Patricia E. Bauer writes, Mr. Stiller, You've Crossed a Line.
Many national disability organizations are calling for a boycott of the movie.
Over the weekend an ad-hoc coalition of more than a dozen disabilities groups — including the Arc of the United States, the National Down Syndrome Congress, the American Association of People With Disabilities and others — laid the groundwork for public protests to begin Monday.
The Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN) made the following video:
- Patricia E. Bauer's series on the issue:
- August 1: Never Go Full Retard
- August 1: Once Upon A Time, There Was a Retard
- August 2: Sorry, Mr. Stiller, You've Crossed a Line
- August 2: Tropic Thunder Update
- August 2: Disability Rights Groups Organizing on Tropic Thunder
- August 4: Readers, What Is Your Advice on Tropic Thunder?
- August 7: The ARC memo: Prepare for "massive action" on Tropic Thunder
- August 8: Just the Facts on Tropic Thunder
- August 8: Internet Trailer Features Simple Jack Footage
- August 8: Full Retard T-shirts Already on Sale
- August 8: Tropic Thunder Screenings Postponed
- August 9: What Happened to the Simple Jack Trailer?
- August 10: Tropic Thunder Boycott Expected
- August 6: Our blah blah blog
- August 7: Kwisteena's Kwaziness
- August 8: Three Little Ladybugs
- August 8: Mauzy's Musings
- August 8: My Holland, My Italy
- August 9: Chewing the Fat
- August 9: Cornish Adoption Journey
- August 9: Where are My Angels?
- August 9: Little Wonders
- August 9: Larkin's Place
- August 10: Autism Vox
- August 10: ReJenerations
- August 10: Whatever to Us
- August 10: New York Times: Thunder Boycott in the Works
- August 10: Erin and MaryEllen's Excellent Adventures
- August 11: Whitterer on Autism
- August 11: Timothy Shriver in the Washington Post: What Tropic Thunder Thinks is Funny
- August 11: Barriers, Bridges and Books
- August 11: Stark County Mental Retardation and Developmental Delay Blog
- August 11: Causa Nostrae Laetitiae
- August 11: Raising Joey
- August 11: F.A.L. Design
- August 11: Pocket Lint
- August 11: The Soccer Mom's Guide to Wicca
- August 11: Garden of Eagan
- August 11: Instantly Mama
- August 11: Mothering by the Seat of My Pants
- August 11: Winter Ramblings
- August 11: Equal not Special
- August 11: The Zoromski Chronicles
- August 11: Life with My Special Ks
- August 11: Adam Joonie
- August 11: Whose Planet Is It Anyway?
- August 11: Our Jacob
- August 11: Asperger's Square 8
- August 12: Leftbrain/Rightbrain