Sunday, July 14, 2013

Trayvon Martin, Slurs and InJustice for all

This was originally posted in 2012... Similar situations have happened recently so I am re-posting.


Facebook Posts


BETTY- I don't know and have stopped trying to understand ignorant,retarded racist, closed minded ,stupid ass people----Im threw!
19 hours ago · Like · 1

SUE- F***tard ....that's all I got.
19 hours ago - Like - 2

Oh my.

Where to even begin.

These ladies were commenting on a YouTube video exposing the use of the word "coon ass" in reference to
Trayvon Martin

 (names have been changed to protect the uh....innocent)

If it wasn't so sad I would be on the floor laughing at the irony......

My comment.
A slur is a slur is a slur...... all of them hurt. Words matter.

My friend Jane tried to educate and even asked them to check out the R word campaign.It didn't go over well. Their posts were removed but Jane ended up feeling bad for saying something.

Jane did this for me. She understands. But now she really understands.

I can not count how many times this has happened to me and other advocates of people with disabilities.
We feel bad for making the offender feel bad.

What?!?

Do you think this happens to Timothy Shriver? He's at a dinner party and somebody cracks a joke using the word. We all know he runs into many of the popular offenders. Wonder what he does? Wonder if they ever bring it up to him? Cause I gotta be honest sometimes you just are stung by it, sometimes you don't want to be the boat rocker. Sometimes you just want to enjoy a drink or a meal without having to tell someone why the word Retard, Retarded, F***tard, Mongoloid is disgusting. Sometimes you get sick of referencing other slurs like Nigger, Fag, Coon Ass,and Chink just so people will get it.

Sometimes you just want people to have respect.

Story time with Mama...
Once in the 70's I went to visit my Great Aunt in Natchez MS, who was then in her late 80's. She had a maid helping her and my Auntie got mad about something the maid didn't do the way she wanted. I remember my Mom trying to calm my Auntie and my Auntie started yelling about how the Nigger was doing it wrong.My Auntie couldn't hear so she yelled everything really loud. It was horrible. We all rushed to apologize to the maid and she was so graceful and assured us she was ok. But here it is decades later and I remember those words. How they made me feel ashamed, how bad it hurt me to see the maids eyes, to give her a hug knowing it was not enough.

Back to Facebook.
 Even after a short and respectful attempt to educate, these women were so angry at a slur, at injustice, they couldn't see their own. Language affects perception. Perception affects equality.

These are the people I want on my side, like I am on theirs. They talk tough, take no crap and speak out about injustice. But they don't see disability.
Not in their world.
Not on their agenda.
Disability does not descriminate. People do.
Disability is silent especially when you aren't listening.

Words hurt people.
In so many ways.
For years,
decades.
It comes out in all manner.

I feel bad for these women, I know what it is like to want to hurt others when you experience such injustice based in language. And I also know what it is like to see the big picture of the damage that language can do. I saw this damage today and I've seen it for years, for decades. I felt this damage today and I've felt it for years, for decades. Just like them.

Words hurt or heal.




3 comments:

  1. Rachel, you get it so right every time. The world will finally be better when we all stand up for each other. for each others right to be respected and treated with dignity. it's not about ownership of a "cause." When will we all stop knocking others down to make ourselves feel bigger? Let's all stand up and do something whenever we see injustice and hurt, even if it's not our own. Next time i'm in a group and someone says the r-word I would really love for someone else to say something. just once I don't want it to have to be me.

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  2. When there is self doubt, we feel the need to belittle others in order to raise our own status. These people are to be pitied in an odd way. They don't have the obvious love and support you bring to your family. I wish you the strength and words to continue the fight, and know that you are supported by so very many who can't even begin to imagine your struggles. Racism and prejudice are based on fear of one's own weaknesses.

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  3. Your words heal, my friend <3

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I LOVE your WORDS too! Please comment!