There's a word that has been making a resurgence around me lately and it's bugging me. It's bugging me because it's been used to demean a certain group of people for years. I am not nearly as eloquent as some other bloggers that I have read that have written about it, so I'm going to refer you to their sites in a second. Here's what I will say though: I've used words that are socially incorrect, politically incorrect before and have used this word as well. Sometimes they are words that are a part of one culture I am involved with but not another and when used in the alternate cultures, I realize how hurtful, demeaning and inappropriate they are. Some people will say "It's just a word." You are correct. It's how we intend the word to be received that makes the word harmful. To that end it is my wish that we would stop using the "R" word. As in a word that has been used in the past to describe people with Down Syndrome.
I can't fully articulate why this particular word bugs me, it really does have to do with why we use the word and the implications that we mean in using the word, so I'm going to stop with these few thoughts. For further thoughts on the use of the "R" word, I refer you to Sarahlynn and Amy.** Both women have daughters with Down Syndrome and have written about this in the past.
**Just realized that I sent you to Amy's blog but the post was written by a guest blogger, Margot Starbuck. Still, I highly recommend Amy's blog for more thoughts on Down Syndrome.