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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

R Word Awareness Day

Today is the annual day of awareness to end the usage of the r-word (retard/retarded).

There are a lot of things you can do to help this clean-mouthed cause. 43 states have amended their laws to use terms like intellectual disability instead of mental retardation. While that is a ginormous step in the right direction, that means that 7 states have not made these extremely important changes yet! The R-Word organization suggests that if you live in Colorado, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Nebraska, North Carolina, or Oklahoma, you should contact your state representatives here and tell them:

As a constituent of [your state], I demand respect and inclusion for people with intellectual disabilities and I encourage you to introduce a measure to change the state’s official language from ‘mental retardation’ to ‘people with intellectual disabilities’.

Another way you can help spread awareness of this issue is by taking the pledge to spread the word to end the word here.

The R-Word has pretty much the same philosophy as Bleep!: "This campaign isn't about limiting speech, it's quite the opposite. We respect your right to say anything you want, but we ask that you recognize that words can be hurtful and they do matter - choose to use words that are less hurtful."