reacting to the word “retard”?
My cousin has cerbyal palsy and my friend always refers to him as “your retarded cousin”. I have asked her to not call him that, but to refer to him by his name; she refused to do so and says i’m over sensitive and that it’s not a offensive word.
How do i react to her ignorance? how do i make her see she’s being rude and get her to stop this word from being used?
I wouldn’t ignore it, that tells her it is okay and you are condoning the use of that word. It’d be like saying ***…you know the word. It’s not okay. I would tell her that this is her last warning and that you refuse to just deal with her poor attitude. Next time she uses it, you’re leaving her, wherever she is and whatever ya’ll are doing, and she can call when she’s willing to leash her loose tongue.
Or you could be mean and introduce her as your ‘s!*t friend’ next time ya’ll are around some cute guys. That might teach her a valuable lesson about the pain of a label.
Wow, where to even start?
Ignorance is so hard to combat, but it’s worth fighting the good fight over. And your friend is most certainly being ignorant. And I use that word in its purest form, meaning devoid of knowledge. She not only doesn’t recognize the inherent offensiveness of the word as she uses it, but she doesn’t even recognize that even if we accepted the word, it doesn’t apply to your cousin because cerebral palsy and mental retardation are two distinct things.
My advice is to refuse to acknowledge her when she uses this term. Just don’t even react. As far as you’re concerned, unless she uses your cousin’s name, she hasn’t spoken. This will have one of two consequences. Either she’ll start to refer to your cousin by his name, or she will stop talking about him. Either way, you have made your point.
You could also talk to your friend’s parents about the whole issue. Explain to them how offended you are and maybe they can get their daughter to stop being so rude.
Good luck. You’re in a tough spot, but you’re doing the right thing by standing up for your cousin.
let me just say, though, that she is not much of a friend if she is calling your cousin that, especially after you talked to her about it.
maybe you could try to approach her again showing her some literature on the disease. have her go with you to volunteer with special education/handicapped children. really, if it continues i would ditch her. you don’t need people like that in your life.
If she is a real friend she would stop after the first time!
Good luck! and i really do hope she stops
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