Someone once asked me why using the R word was such a big deal, and who did it really hurt anyway?
I get it. It's "just" a word, but words have a way of winding their way into your psyche and defining you, degrading you, becoming you. Words matter, and the use of the R word- retard or retarded in reference to someone else is hateful and it is an insult. The word literally means "to slow", but used in it's derogatory form it is a way of letting someone know that they are less than, not as good as, in short- that they are stupid.
My Sara is far from any of those things. She is also smart enough to know when a word is aimed at insulting her, as I imagine it is for many other people who hear the R word casually thrown around.
So today take the pledge to stop using the R word. Speak up when you hear others say it and calmly explain why it's wrong, why it hurts, and why they should stop. And if they ask you who it really hurts, show them a picture of my daughter, Sara.
Because like our mommas taught us, if you don't have anything nice to say, then don't say anything at all.