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Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby acereraser » Tue Feb 02, 2010 6:28 pm

It has been a long time since I took any music lessons, so the powers that be could have changed it, but isn't retard a valid music term, meaning to slow the tempo?

The first time I heard the Black Eyed Peas song, it was "Let's Get Retarded".

Several years ago, I was ice fishing on Leech Lake, in Walker Bay, and about 3:30 in the A.M., Randy from Shakopee came over from one of the neighboring icehouses. He saw our light was on, and all his pals had fallen asleep. We didn't know it, but he was about to tell one of the most enjoyable (and least memorable) tales I have heard in my life, mostly involving a trip to Mexico, getting stung by something in the ocean, and the locals telling him to pee on the injury. He prefaced this story by warning us "I'll tell you this story, it'll make you go retarded."

The upshot is, the modern connotation of "retarded" is "fucked up", which, however common, doesn't have any place in decent conversation, and this causes problems for people still (selectively) offended by indecency. Think of how many times the various permutations of "fuck" are used on the Hill daily, but who really cares?
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby boston_jeff » Tue Feb 02, 2010 6:45 pm

Its definitely a no-no in my field. A person with Down's Syndrome or a developmental disability. Many autistics prefer that term because they want to "own" the diagnosis. There's nothing inherently wrong with being "autistic," so why shouldn't we be called autistic vs. a "person with autism." Its not a disease that can be cured. The hearing impaired are in a similar boat. But "mentally retarded" or "handicapped" are not accepted. And sure, retard as a verb is fine in many contexts. Calling a person "retarded" is construed as offensive.

Dan Savage has offered "leotarded." I like that compromise: http://www.thestranger.com/seattle/Sava ... id=1487886

Btw, one of my favorite Massholisms: "eatin' retahd sandwiches."
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby Uncle_Leaver » Tue Feb 02, 2010 9:52 pm

acereraser wrote:It has been a long time since I took any music lessons, so the powers that be could have changed it, but isn't retard a valid music term, meaning to slow the tempo?

Actually, that's "ritard," short for ritardando, although my favorite definition can be found here:

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Ritard
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby Stebben84 » Tue Feb 02, 2010 10:12 pm

I've always preferred the term "fucktard" It has a similar connotation without offending the PC police. Not sure how well it is used as a verb although.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby Thusnelda » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:21 am

*sigh*

Y'all can use whatever word you like, but as someone close to several people with developmental disabilities, I'm disappointed that many people take it so lightly -- including Rahm Emanuel. People with cognitive impairments and other disabling conditions didn't have the choice to be the way they are, and certainly didn't choose to get held up as an example of something backwards or ridiculous.

What boston_jeff mentions ("autistic" vs. "person with autism") is called people-first language. If the person chooses to identify in some other way, that's cool, but it's a matter of emphasizing the fact that you're talking about a person -- a collection of many characteristics, talents and challenges -- not simply "a cripple" or "a retard." Because just as there are loads of differences between me and, say, Neddly (thank heavens), you can't just lump everyone with a developmental disability together in a group. Just like you can't lump black folks or teh gheyz or any other category of Those People.

I mean, there are so many millions of other words out there, including words that are much more descriptive or unique, without putting down another group of people. Like "fucknut!" Or "asswipe!"

And I didn't want to draw attention to one particular fucknut, as that is what he craves (as opposed to, say, recognition for USEFUL contributions), but I reeeeeeally, really really didn't appreciate Blaska's need to reference the recently deceased Kim Peek in his column.

Dickless over here wrote:My operating thesis is that liberals were born without a corpus [sic]collossum -- that flap of tissue connecting the two lobes of the brain. That was the malady that afflicted the late Kim Peek, the real-life inspiration for Dustin Hoffman’s character in Rain Man. Kim Peek could memorize telephone books worth of facts; he just couldn’t reason. Or tie his shoes.


I proudly chose to become a liberal and stay that way. Kim Peek didn't choose to experience life the way he did, unable to live independently or make many of his own life decisions; nor did the people I love. And aside from reminding him to spell "callosum" correctly, might I also remind the patriarch of Stately Blaska Manor that he has people very close to him who didn't choose to have the conditions they have, either.

Now is probably as good a time as any to remind people that any one of us could become disabled -- cognitively, physically, whatever -- at any time. One woman I know in supported employment used to be a teacher herself; her enunciation is still close to perfect, but her cognitive level is probably lower than those of the small children she used to teach.

So go ahead and pick on me and my ilk directly, but don't you dare try to be derisive towards us by showing how little you value people who not only didn't choose to be the way they are but might not be able to defend themselves. THAT is pitiful.

Asshole.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby ilikebeans » Wed Feb 03, 2010 2:39 am

"Retarded" has moved away from use in the mental health profession into a colloquialism, much like "idiot," "moron," (and the now-infamous "moran"), and "imbecile." Emmanuel owed a public apology to no one, as far as I'm concerned. He may have owed an apology to those in attendance at the closed-door meeting, depending on how formal it was.

But here's a question: Is this similar to how the word "gay" is used as a pejorative, as in, "That's so gay"? That one seems to remain unacceptable by most people out of high school, and indeed, there's the version "ghey" to supposedly take out the homosexual meaning. Imagine if Emmanuel had instead uttered, "that's fucking gay"-- the media shitstorm would still be grabbing headlines.

As for Ned, well...

Ned Flanders wrote:Awww. We love havin' you back ya big dumb retard. I'll call you whatever makes you happy.
...
A retarded chimp wtih a "D" after its name would be elected in Madison given all the "open minded" deep thinkers that vote there.
...
I will spare you the added embarrassment of responding to this point as I am firmly against mistreating retarded children.

More rightist "compassion".
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby Thusnelda » Wed Feb 03, 2010 10:06 am

See, a lot of people use that excuse -- "oh, it's a colloquialism; it's not a big deal." It's exactly like saying "that's so gay." And as for that other excuse -- "I don't hate [people with disabilities, gay people, black people, Republicans]; everyone will tell you that!" -- that's the "some of my best friends are retards" cop-out. If you talk like that, other people (who don't know you or the things you believe) will see you condoning it and do it themselves.

As long as there are people out there to whom either of those negative labels refers, why risk it? There are plenty of other words or names out there that are more accurate and/or pointed without the same pejorative effect.

As John C. McGinley says, "You've heard me call J.D. a number of names over the years: Patricia, Pam, Helen, Billie, Nicole, Deb, Nancy, Kathleen, Mary, Loretta and Grace." While that's an entirely different can of worms, it's at least an illustration.

I mean, how hard is it? When you use language like that, all you're saying is that you couldn't think hard enough to come up with something more appropriate. That's a reflection on you, not the person you're trying to insult.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby boston_jeff » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:05 pm

There's just no place for it anymore, and sorry, "fucktard" is not an acceptable alternative. Emanuel did the right thing by apologizing to Special Olympics and agreeing to help the "r-word" campaign.

Admittedly, the r-word slips out for many of us on occasion, but that doesn't make it right, and we should move away from using it. Feigning ignorance about the offensiveness of the term or arguing semantics is not a very convincing strategy for anyone on this board. Unless you happen to be developmentally disabled.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby jman111 » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:12 pm

Thusnelda wrote:As long as there are people out there to whom either of those negative labels refers, why risk it? There are plenty of other words or names out there that are more accurate and/or pointed without the same pejorative effect.


So I ask again, if he had said "That is f*cking stupid!", would the "dim bulbs" of the world have a right to be offended? Low IQ is not a choice...
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby boston_jeff » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:28 pm

Come on, if you don't "get it" by now, you're either obtuse or a moron.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby dave esmond » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:34 pm

boston_jeff wrote:Unless you happen to be developmentally disabled.


See here's where I don't know what to think.

Yes, I've tried to stop using retard and gay. Even tho' they often meant exactly what I wanted 'em them to mean to the person I said them to. It offends people I care about and all that so I'm trying not to use 'em.

But...

Sometimes what people mean to say is someone is behaving as if they were "developmentally disabled". And they mean it to be at least a little offensive. I don't see how using a different term is any less offensive then using retarded. We started to use the term sped, short for special education when we were told not to use retarded in high school. If it's got exactly the same meaning isn't it just as offensive?

Is it the terms that are offensive or the comparison? I'd think it's the comparison.

It can get into a whole area of PCness that I'm not real comfortable with. But I do care about the people who I'm potentially offending.

So, how does one say that someone is behaving as if they don't have the mental abilities of an average person without offending people who really don't? Maybe you can't. Or at least not in a handy one word way.

For now I'm goin' with idiot and idiotic. And yes, it's often supposed to be kinda offensive and demeaning to the person I'm speaking about. I'll wait for the ruling on that one I guess.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby jman111 » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:36 pm

If he had said "That stinks!", would those with chronic halitosis or BO have a right to be offended?
I know, it sounds ridiculous. But, where does it all end? He didn't call someone a "retard", he said something was retarded- big difference.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby ilikebeans » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:39 pm

Or if he had said, "that's the plan of a moron," would everyone with an IQ between 51-70 get offended? No, because it's fallen out of clinical use.

The word moron, along with others including "retarded", "idiotic", "imbecilic", "stupid", and "feeble-minded", was formerly considered a valid descriptor in the psychological community, but it is now deprecated by psychologists.

I would say that's the difference between "retarded" and "gay"-- gay is still used primarily to mean homosexual.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby boston_jeff » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:50 pm

Yes, where does it all end? Maybe you should tell us...

Anyone can behave in a stupid manner, or have smelly breath. But a pejorative that refers to one specific group is offensive, unless that group sanctions the use of the term and typically only when a member of that group uses it. Examples include the use of "queer" by homosexuals as a term of empowerment, or the use of the "n-word" by blacks, or the use of "autistic" by autistics.

I'm not sure you want to justify your use of the "r-word" by explaining that you were describing a non-disabled individual who was "behaving like a developmentally disabled individual." You're not winning any arguments or friends in the community with that one.

People act stupid, call them idiots or morons or imbeciles, fine. But we should try to refrain from using the r-word. And yes, I know that many of those terms were previously used to describe the developmentally disabled. But no longer and they no longer have the connotation that "retarded" does.
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Re: Rahm Emmanuel "F*cking Retarded"

Postby butters » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:57 pm

boston_jeff wrote:Come on, if you don't "get it" by now, you're either obtuse or a moron.

Hey! I take offense to that. But why would you care if you hurt someone's feelings? You are soooo insensitive and almost caveman-like.

Watch out. The PC speech police are out in full force.
Last edited by butters on Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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